Sports Spectrum Magazine Summer 2021

U.S. archery team's Brady Ellison, Mackenzie Brown putting faith on display at Olympics

Members of both the men’s and women’s U.S. archery teams competing in the Tokyo Olympics will be doing so while representing Christ and putting their faith on display.

>> Subscribe to Sports Spectrum Magazine for more stories where sports and faith connect <<

That includes Brady Ellison, a four-time Olympian and the top-ranked male archer in the world. Ellison took home a silver medal in the team competition at each of the past two Olympics and also won an individual bronze in 2016.

“I just step on the field and try to let how I shoot, how I behave and how I act in my life represent myself and God,” he told the Times-Union (Albany, N.Y.) in 2012. “If people like that, they do; if they don’t, they don’t.”

According to Christianity Today, Ellison was baptized shortly before the 2012 Games in London.

“Once I put winning in God’s hands, I stopped worrying about that,” he told Beliefnet. “I just went to tournaments and shot with no fear, doing only the best I can do and leaving the rest up to God.”

Ellison is the headliner of a men’s team coming off a gold medal at the Archery Final Olympic Qualification Tournament in Paris last month.

On the women’s side, Mackenzie Brown was the lone archer representing the United States at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, but that will not be the case in Tokyo.

Brown, Casey Kaufhold and Jennifer Mucino-Fernandez came in second place at the qualification tournament to earn a spot in the team competition as well. The 26-year-old Brown will be relied upon to help the 17-year-old Kaufhold and 18-year-old Mucino-Fernandez navigate their first Olympics.

When Brown qualified for the 2016 Olympics, the Flint, Texas, native expressed her thanks to those supporting her along the way and gave glory to God.

“I’m so grateful for all of the support and love from yall!” she wrote on Instagram. “God is so good all the time!”

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Mackenzie Brown (@mackbrown14)

Ranked as high as third in the world in October 2015, the four-time medalist at the Pan American Outdoor Championships was upset in the round of 32 by San Yu Htwe of Myanmar in her Olympic debut. Now she returns as the 11th-ranked archer in the world and veteran leader of the U.S. women’s team.

Brown is outspoken about her faith on social media, often giving thanks to God and posting Bible verses.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Mackenzie Brown (@mackbrown14)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Mackenzie Brown (@mackbrown14)

She says in her Twitter bio, “I love my God who gave me everything I have and will have!”

The archery events begin Friday with the men’s and women individual ranking rounds, followed by the mixed team competitions Saturday, and other team competitions on Sunday (women’s) and Monday (men’s). The individual events are scheduled for July 30 (women’s) and 31 (men’s).

RELATED STORIES:
Quanesha Burks held on to God’s promise while going from McDonald’s to Olympics
Sydney McLaughlin gives ‘all the glory to God’ after setting 400m hurdles world record
INCREASE STORY: God Alone Defines Me – U.S. Wrestler Kyle Snyder
— Melissa Gonzalez, wife of Lions QB, represents Colombia at Olympics, aims to share Christ
— U.S. sprinter Allyson Felix defies odds, prepares for fifth and final Olympics
— Swimmer Simone Manuel overcomes odds to qualify for Olympics, praises God for success