LDS rugby player Will Hopoate announces he will not play or train on Sundays

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  • Hope & Faith give us strength Utah County, UT
    Jan. 19, 2017 6:42 a.m.


    We've been reminded pretty continually that individual circumstances merit adaptation. I myself was someone who worked on Sundays for a short time and it irked at me. I eventually found a new job. Then I refused to do it ever again, even having to leave jobs in uncertainty.

    Eventually, Heavenly Father asked something more. I was given a prompting to head into what I was fairly certain wouldn't allow me to provide for a while. I had to self employ and had to leave my existing job before starting.

    I knew I had the prompting and couldn't deny that and I loved my faith enough that I was both happy for the answer to prayers and nervous. But I followed that prompting.

    As I did extra financial hardships hit us. We knew it was part of His plan, so we were thankful and prayed for guidance.

    Thing is, we've always had what we needed. We've learned more about frugality than ever before. But our afflictions are really our gains in knowledge. Our lives are happier.

    We're only ever asked to take crosses as we can bare the load. That doesn't always mean we'll think we can though. ;) But with God, anything is possible.

  • morpunkt Glendora, CA
    April 1, 2016 5:41 a.m.

    You nailed it. Ditto. Ditto. Thank you for commenting on just about everything I was about to type.

  • 2close2call Los Angeles, CA
    March 30, 2016 10:32 p.m.

    "LDS rugby player Will Hopoate announces he will not play or train on Sundays"

    I absolutely think his decision is completely foolish as it is solely based on belief and not knowledge as all faiths are. However, many religious are not even able to to make such a decision at all as they would lose their job and would not be able to make a living if they declared they would not work on Sunday. So if he can make a living even after making such a declaration, it is obviously 100% up to him.

  • The Caravan Moves On Enid, OK
    March 30, 2016 9:22 p.m.

    @ Hutterite - American Fork, UT - "My rejected comment was sound. If you want to be held up as an example because you won't participate in the economy on Sunday, then don't expect a free pass if you are still are a consumer on Sunday."

    Uhh.....isn't "participating" in the economy on a Sunday and being a "consumer" (in the economy?) on Sunday the same thing?

    What is it you are trying to say?

  • wyoming cougar Green River, WY
    March 30, 2016 6:31 p.m.

    It's interesting dilemma at times- when I was in college I was required to work on some Sundays at the MTC. The missionaries needed fed on Sundays. Even the Church employs many people that have to work on Sundays at times. Usually all is done possible to insure they are able to attend their meetings, but spending some time at work is required.

    I loved the quote by Eli Herring's father after his decision to not play in the NFL (even though he'd have been a first round pick): "Our great grandfathers called it the Holy Sabbath Day, our grandfathers called it the Sabbath day, our fathers called it Sunday, and now we just refer to it as the weekend."

    I think there are still ways to honor and set aside the Sabbath Day if some work is required, but it definitely becomes a difficult decision for many. I'm grateful to only need work on Sundays very infrequently in my profession, and be able to generally spend the day with my family!

  • DEW Cougars Sandy, UT
    March 30, 2016 4:58 p.m.

    Former BYU Football player ((1995) Eli Herring, he too rather not play on Sunday and he is happy family guy and being a HS Teacher in Provo School District. I wonder if he thought about playing just for one year. He would have is house paid off and more.

  • fatcaesar Las Vegas, NV
    March 30, 2016 1:07 p.m.

    Reminds me of the academy best picture winner Chariots of Fire.

  • fatcaesar Las Vegas, NV
    March 30, 2016 1:02 p.m.

    Reminds me of the best picture academy award winner Chariots of Fire!

  • Groucho Marks L, UT
    March 30, 2016 10:48 a.m.

    This is an entirely personal decision and no one has the right to judge you by it. The Savior husked corn on the Sabbath. He also counseled something about an ox, right? I am not saying that Will is wrong or right here. I'm saying that it was his decision and I admire him for standing up for his values.

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    March 30, 2016 9:41 a.m.

    Also, I don’t know of many church leaders that would advise giving up a job that requires some work on Sunday, without having some other means arranged to financially support self and family. I don’t think the Lord expects us to impoverish ourselves to make sure that we never, ever work one hour, minute or second on the Sabbath. I guess this goes along with the Sabbath being made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    March 30, 2016 9:36 a.m.

    @Lifelong Ute. @DrMAN.
    I appreciate your comments. One example—I don’t think Jimmer Fredette would get the same reception to his request that Hopoate got when he negotiates a new short-term agreement with the New York Knicks. So, should Fredette give up his dream of playing in the NBA? Another example I know of is Eli Herring, who rejected an employment offer from the Oakland Raiders of the NFL. But, then we have Steve Young, Chad Lewis, and Ziggy Ansah who accepted employment offers in the NFL. This is to say nothing of the “average” Mormon entertainers, doctors, EMTs and others who must work some Sundays, or choose a different profession. Don’t think this is as black and white as some make it out to be. More of an individual choice between each one of us and the Lord.

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    March 30, 2016 9:16 a.m.

    An incredibly courageous man. Others have made this decision and I have never heard one of them lamenting their life, the decision, or the money they missed out on.
    It is not possible for people in some industries if they want to stay there, but if you want it bad enough, no sacrifice is too much.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    March 29, 2016 11:52 p.m.

    My rejected comment was sound. If you want to be held up as an example because you won't participate in the economy on Sunday, then don't expect a free pass if you are still are a consumer on Sunday.

  • Old Jake Salt Lake City, UT
    March 29, 2016 10:01 p.m.

    He is a champ! I love that guy!

    We are seeing local club teams play on Sunday here in Utah.

    What gives? Hello, little kids. Stand up and be like Hopoate!!!!

  • DrMAN Orem, UT
    March 29, 2016 7:21 p.m.

    Be the employee you need to be such that you can leverage that when you negotiate your employment contract. If mediocre performance affords you no special treatment, quit being mediocre. Blaming one's employer for one's failure to observe the Sabbath is akin to saying, "Satan made me do it."

  • Lifelong Ute Salt Lake City, UT
    March 29, 2016 5:34 p.m.

    "When he signed a contract with the Bulldogs, Hopoate said he did not want to train or play on Sundays.
    “I understand that Des or the club could have said no without hesitation,”

    That's what is so amazing about this story. He could have just waited for his club to say "you have to play on Sundays" and then he could have justified playing on Sundays because his job required it.

    But no, instead he wouldnt have played and he wouldnt have taken that job if it meant playing on Sunday.

    @Vermonter - thats precisely what I was referring to - just because the job requires it doesn't' mean its suddenly the right decision.

  • Lifelong Ute Salt Lake City, UT
    March 29, 2016 5:25 p.m.


    Who is to say that remaining with a currently company is the correct choice if your employer requires you to work Sunday?

    I likewise am not saying what is always right or wrong. However, I will tell you I was blessed to have walked away from a job once that "required" me to work on Sundays.

    This will not be a popular statement and yet I believe its true: often members look for excuses and sometimes I think members often justify working on Sundays because their employers require it. Do employers require it sometimes? Yes. And yet our prophets have also counseled us not to work on Sundays if at all possible. The Prophets have counseled us to do that, even knowing it may be extraordinarily difficult to find a different job.

    Point is: You are right not all people have the luxury he does. And yet even without the luxury I do not believe the answer is always to say "oh well I'll just work any Sunday my job tells me to"

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    March 29, 2016 4:09 p.m.

    Where do you draw the line? Hopoate has an understanding employer, who will allow him to remain part of the team (company), even though Hopoate will not work when the team (company) might need him most. Some professions and some companies require Sunday work. I am not saying Hopoate is right or wrong. I am not saying others who choose to work on Sunday are right or wrong. But, for most of us, who are not the outstanding workers at our company or the outstanding players on the team, we cannot make Hopoate’s choice and remain with that company or in that profession.

  • Obama10 SYRACUSE, UT
    March 29, 2016 3:42 p.m.

    Great example of faith. I'm not sure I could have made the same decision.