Stories & Testimonials
Hockey Chaplain Program
The Cobourg Cougars of the Ontario Junior Hockey League are extremely appreciative of and indeed honoured by the unconditional support we receive from the club’s chaplain Tony Posthumus. Whether in the form of one-on-one and group support our players routinely receive in helping them to deal with personal, familial and educational issues and challenges, such as relationships and work/school/hockey balance or the behind-the-scenes support provided to members of our staff and volunteers facing life challenges, Tony is always there for us.
Tony encourages our players to respect and trust their teammates and coaches and to develop character qualities and moral values through bi-weekly chapel sessions that speak to teamwork, peace, prayer, adversity, trust, humility, influence and a host of other quality characteristics. While we are keenly interested as a club in providing a platform to help develop young men into excellent hockey players, our fundamental interest is in developing young men with a commitment to goodness, discipline and knowledge into excellent members of society who happen to play hockey.
In addition to praying for players and cheering hard for the players while attending games and helping to increase and promote positive fan engagement by hosting poster making and other events for community youth, Tony has made an indelible mark on the organization by helping us to face the multitude of challenges and complexities that exist in today’s world. Simply put, Tony is an extremely valuable member of our team.
It is with great pleasure that I write this note to share my experience with the team chaplain program as a parent of a player on the Cobourg Cougars Jr. A hockey team.
On various occasions throughout Reade’s two seasons with the team, he came home and talked to me about the “chapel” sessions that took place after practice. Naturally, I was curious about his experience with the sessions as we are not a particularly religious family. I encouraged him to tell me more to find out if he was open to the messages being shared. Though his responses weren’t long, he responded with positivity and that he found it interesting as Pastor Tony had a great way of bringing the themes to life around sport.
Over the two seasons, he came to share with me what a great guy Tony was and how he made chapel relevant and engaging. We are always grateful when our kids have a broad range of positive role models that they can call on should they ever find that they are in need of support. Tony very quickly built rapport with Reade (and I am sure many of his team members) and he looked forward to his chapel visits, his support personally and of the team and his friendly banter.
Sport at this level requires full commitment and can bring with it exhilarating highs and equal amounts of pressure and adversity from time to time. The messages of character, faith, perseverance and resilience have and will continue to serve them well as players and young men. We as a family have been grateful for the program and hope that it will continue now and in the future.
Tony and his family have become an integral part of the Cobourg Cougars Community. The Chaplain program has made and will continue to make a profound impact on the lives of the players.
The Cougars community also extends to our large group of over 60 volunteers, whom Tony also interacts with, whether it be as a good friend, a mentor or a Chaplain.
Having a program like this in place gives the parents of current and future players another off-ice mentoring role model. We are very proud of the influence and listening ear Tony has been able to provide to the team, and the greater Cougars Community.
Over the last two years, Tony has truly built a relationship of trust with the team. This has allowed him to really connect with the boys. Tony does not just provide faith and relational support to the team, but also acts as a constant encouragement to the team. Whether it be organizing sign-making before games, or delivering a weekly message, Tony always works to ensure the team feels supported.
We are very happy to have Tony as a member of our community and are so thankful that he plays such a vital role with every one he comes in contact with.
Our son Spence is a member of the Cobourg Cougars hockey team. This year Spence left home to play in Cobourg where he billeted with the Moulton family. My wife Kerry and I were so excited when we heard that he connected with Tony Posthumus who works with Youth Unlimited and Hockey Ministries International. Tony has been a huge blessing in Spencer’s life. As parents it’s hard to see your child leave home. You can only hope and pray that you raised them well enough to inspire them to make good decisions, but as we all know sometimes that doesn’t go as planned. So to know there is someone there on the other side to pick up the pieces and continue where you left off was a relief for us. Tony was there to meet with, share with and just an ear to lean on sometimes when he needed to and that alone was an answer to prayers for us.
How many times does a child leave the nest and lose ground with their faith and direction in life? I suspect lots but with Spencer this year we can honestly say it was the opposite. He grew in his faith and matured as a young man and we have Tony to thank for that as well as organizations like YU and HMI, who do amazing work with our young people today all over the world.
So on behalf of the Roberts family we just want to give a big shoutout to Tony Posthumus for his amazing gifts and work he has done for Spence, his teammates and the youth in the Cobourg area this past year!
Thank you Tony!