Where Does Your Story Begin?June 18, 2013
“Hi, I’m Charlie”comments powered by Disqus
“I need to be excited about what I’m doing for me to be effective. As you know hockey’s an intense sport and if you don’t bring it, you’re just gonna get run over.” (Charlie)
Charles Blyth doesn’t leave his intensity at the rink....it travels with him everywhere. He brings it all...all the time.
His dad, Bruce and I played hockey together in our teen-age years. He played in the Montreal Canadiens’ junior system before going on to captain the Varsity Hockey
Team at Bowling Green University. Following in his father’s footsteps, Charlie laced on the skates at a very young age and pursued a career in hockey playing for teams in Montreal, at Choate Rosemary Hall, Amherst College, Tacoma Washington and St. Louis Missouri where he met and married his beautiful wife Rebekah. They have two lovely daughters.
My son, Don Jr. and Charlie are good friends. Growing up they played hockey all the time, on backyard rinks, roads, driveways, basements...wherever they could find enough space to pass and shoot. They were teammates on youth hockey teams and on Choate Rosemary Hall’s varsity team. It was this friendship that led to Charlie’s attending a Christian Hockey Camp in Boston.
Charlie explains it this way: “As a youngster, I went to church but never understood that I could have a personal relationship with Jesus. However, when I turned 14 this changed. The summer of 1990 my friend and teammate, Don Liesemer Jr., invited me to a Christian Hockey Camp in Boston. I had never been to a hockey camp and was excited. At the same time I was quite nervous about the spiritual part. Would I fit in?
What an incredible experience awaited me! Night one at chapel a professional hockey player spoke about his Christian faith. He talked about the importance of knowing Christ personally. God was working on me. On Night three I responded to the invitation, confessed my sins and received Christ as my Saviour. Awesome! The Lord was so real to me. A huge burden lifted. I was so happy. My life was forever changed. Returning home, I attended church, read my Bible and prayed regularly. While I faced challenges and struggles along the way, especially my first years at college, my friend stood with me and encouraged me in my faith.
After college I went on to play professional hockey. Over the years since that summer evening in Boston It's been quite a ride! And it all began with a life changing experience as I encountered Christ at a Christian Hockey Camp in 1990.”
Charlie has been deeply committed to the work of HMI through hockey chapels, instructing and sharing Christ at camps, working in our Montreal office, serving on the St. Louis camp committee and now acting director of the St. Louis Christian Hockey Camp... And he brings it all...all the time.