(OneNewsNow) – Former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow recently opened the doors of the Tebow CURE Hospital in the Philippines – the same country where doctors told his mother 27 years ago that he should be aborted if she wanted to live.
Last week’s opening of the children’s hospital almost didn’t become a reality when Haiyan, one of the most powerful typhoons ever to hit the Philippines, struck the island nation in November 2013, miraculously sparing the medical facility that was under construction. The hospital in Davao City was made possible by the Tim Tebow Foundation, a Christian charity founded in 2010 by the former pro QB (Denver Broncos, New York Jets, and New England Patriots) and Heisman Trophy winner (2007).
Designed to treat children unable to afford the treatment necessary for their severe orthopedic conditions, the Tebow CURE Hospital became a dream of Tebow’s, having a heart for youth in the nation where he was born to two missionary parents.
A pro-life poster child of hope
Tebow, known for boldly sharing his Christian faith on and off the field-field during his college and NFL careers, became a champion for the pro-life movement after publicly sharing his own story – how he could have been aborted if his mother, Pam Tebow, had taken the advice given to her by a doctor back in 1987 in the Philippines. The physician told her that if she wanted to live, she must have an abortion.
During this mission trip with her husband, Pam had quickly become stricken with a bad case of dysentery during her pregnancy, which doctors said was the result of a “fetal tumor” and a “mass of cells” — referring to Tim while in the womb — that must be removed as quickly as possible if she wanted to survive the illness. However, his mother shrugged off the medical advice and chose instead not to abort and to continue with her pregnancy. Despite the serious nature of her life-threatening illness, Pam rejected the medication that doctors told her she needed to recover – and miraculously ended up giving birth to her healthy baby boy, Tim.
This story was relayed by the young athlete and his mother before tens of millions of television viewers during a Super Bowl commercial in 2010 in in partnership with Focus on the Family. This was the same year he was drafted in the first round by the Denver Broncos, where he started the last three games of his rookie season as quarterback. The next year, during the 2011 season, the Broncos started with a lackluster 1-4 record and decided to hand Tebow the role as the starting quarterback in game six, as they started winning with him on the field — especially with his consistent (and well-known) fourth-quarter heroics. That same year, Tebow led the Broncos to win the AFC West title, before leading the team to win its first playoff game in six years.
Tebow’s stardom began earlier in his football career when he became the first college sophomore to win the Heisman Trophy in 2007 with the Florida Gators. In 2008 he led the Gators to a national championship, leading the team to 13-1 records that year and in 2009, when he set Southeastern Conference all-time records for career passing efficiency and total rushing touchdowns. During both his NCAA and NFL careers, Tebow was very expressive of his Christian faith, often praying on the field and visually displaying Bible references.
Faith in action
Besides displaying his faith on the field, Tebow has put his Christian faith into action off the field, which continues to this day. A year after he founded the Tim Tebow Foundation, he announced his proposal to build the Tebow CURE Hospital in the Philippines, with the groundbreaking taking place the next year in January 2012. The construction of the five-story hospital was finalized several months ago in September, complete with three operating rooms for pediatric orthopedic surgeries and 30 hospital beds for children undergoing treatment.
Partnering with the Tim Tebow Foundation, CURE International president Dale Brantner is pleased with the new facility, which he believes will bring not only physical restoration but also spiritual healing and hope to children and parents across the Philippines.
“The opening of the Tebow CURE Hospital is the fulfillment of long-held dreams and many prayers,” Brantner announced at the hospital’s opening on December 10. “We are excited to partner with the Tim Tebow Foundation to bring healing to the children of the Philippines in Jesus’ name.” The official grand opening is scheduled for Spring 2015.
Tebow, who began serving as a college football analyst for ESPN last December after being cut by the New England Patriots before the beginning of the 2013 season, also expressed his excitement about the opening of the new facility, which he prays will be a blessing to underprivileged and afflicted children in the nation of his birth.
“It is so exciting to be able to provide healing and care for these incredibly deserving children halfway around the world,” Tebow proclaimed when the Tebow CURE Hospital opened its doors for the first time.