The tie that binds Tebow and WatsonBy Percy D. Della
Philippine Daily Inquirer
SACRAMENTO—Tim Tebow and Bubba Watson are friends by way of celebrity, geography and something else.
The Philippine-born Tebow—an erstwhile quarterback of the Denver Broncos—now with the New York Jets—and Watson—golf’s newly-crowned Masters champion—are both from Florida.
Both are sports superstars—but the one thing that binds them together is their unabashed Christianity.
“Tim and I believe in the Bible and doing good for people. That’s our connection,” Watson told reporters prior to the start of the Tim Tebow Celebrity Golf Classic in Jacksonville, Florida, last week. “We both play sports, and there are other connections, too, but our first connection is being Christians.”
Watson is golf’s newest monarch who brought home the robe of royalty—the green jacket for winning at Augusta. He was back to being every bit a commoner again when he handed his friend, Tebow a special gift—his Masters player’s badge.
At Augusta, Watson was randomly given the number 15—the same number Tim Tebow has worn with at the University of Florida and in the pros with the Broncos and, now the Jets.
“The gift was very special,” the Makati-born Tebow told sports writers. “He didn’t have to do anything like that. Bubba’s just an amazing guy. He’s been so supportive of me and my foundation.”
Tebow’s display of football and faith by “Tebowing”—kneeling in prayer after each miraculous come-from behind win went viral during last year’s NFL season.
Since he started on the PGA tour, Watson also has been outspoken about his Christian faith. After his win at Augusta on Easter Sunday, Watson also lost no time tweeting who he believes is his true master. “There’s people who want to put down Christians. I try to tell them Jesus loves you. It’s just a way to be strong in my faith.”
The celebrity golf tournament last week is one of Tebow’s fund-raising avenues for his humanitarian projects. Along with Cure International, Tebow’s foundation is in the process of obtaining permits to build a $3-million 32-bed hospital for needy children in Davao City.
Aside from the hospital, Tim’s foundation also supports Uncle Dick’s Home, an orphanage and home to 49 orphans his parents established in Lamsugod, Surallah, South Cotabato, while they were missionaries in the area in the 1980s.
Tim is known to travel to Mindanao with the Tebow family without media fanfare to visit the orphanage in the summer.
Cure spokesperson Lisa Snow told me yesterday Tebow could visit Davao when ground is broken for the hospital.
“I don’t want to speculate, but it is likely that Tim could be in Davao City at the appropriate time,” Lisa said.
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Writer-artist Chi Balmaceda Gutierrez belongs to a multi-sectoral group fighting to save pine trees at Luneta Hill from SM Baguio’s chainsaw to make way for a new mall wing.
Several of the 182 “condemned” trees have reportedly been cut down or earth-balled by the mall conglomerate, before a judge issued a temporary environmental protection order last week on the planned tree massacre.
Chi said that in a recent dialogue with Hans Sy of SM Holdings, tree advocates, including filmmaker Kidlat Tahimik, repeatedly drove home a point—development can go on by building around trees.
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