Church social media features posts from former NFL player Manti Te’o


Inspirational messages from former Notre Dame and NFL linebacker Manti Te’o were shared on social media Sunday by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

His three messages and photos, posted on the church’s website Facebook and instagram stories, focusing on overcoming adversity, forgiveness and how Te’o learned to find inner peace.

Te’o, a member of the Latter Day Saint faith, was a Heisman Trophy contender and Notre Dame’s star linebacker before becoming the center of a media storm in 2013 when it was revealed that his late girlfriend was not did not exist but was in fact a creation on social networks.

Te’o recently recounted his version of events in a Netflix documentary, “Untold: The Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist.”

“Refiner’s Fire”

Te’o’s first spiritual message centered on dealing with life’s trials and learning to trust in God.

“There’s this term called ‘refiner’s fire,’ and life seems to be everyone’s life continually,” he wrote. “When I go through difficult times and trials, I smile because I understand what this fire is and Heavenly Father is shaping me right now. It allows the heat to rise so that I can be molded into who I must become. I learned that I needed to trust God, keep doing my best, and allow Him to carry me. I began to see how I could be an instrument in his hands to do the things he needed me to do. I don’t know why things happen. But I must have faith. It doesn’t have to be perfect, but I have to be patient. I can’t always control what happens, but I can control my reaction and always try to be a positive light and a good influence on others.

“Forgiveness was a process”

In his second post, Te’o writes that “forgiveness has been a process for me.” He found answers by learning and following the Savior’s example.

“I’ve learned that to find a level of peace again, I have to let things go,” he wrote. “Many of us carry burdens in the form of anger and revenge that can sometimes lead us to a dark place. I felt this and was desperate for peace. I was always taught to forgive, but I knew this would be difficult…. Once I learned to forgive, all feelings of anger and revenge dissipated and I found true peace.

Find peace in Christ

Now married and the parent of a young girl, Te’o has found a new perspective on how God watches over his children in their struggles and how he helps them grow.

Te’o learned that the only way to find peace in this life is to keep the commandments and follow Jesus Christ.

“The gospel in its purest form has given me peace to navigate through the challenges I have gone through and continue to go through today. This peace that comes from the Atonement of Jesus Christ is the only thing that has helped me at my lowest and my highest,” Te’o wrote.

“It is my testimony that this peace is something this world and all it has to offer could never give me. The peace that only comes from the Savior’s atoning sacrifice is what saved me.


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