Fred Rogers, or Mister Rogers as most of the world knows and remembers him, was a Presbyterian minister who graduated from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in 1963. He created Mister Roger’s Neighborhood that ran for 33 years, and continues to be seen around the world today. Mr. Rogers passed away in 2003, but left an everlasting stamp on this world because of his mission to show the world Christ’s love.
Although he was not permitted to share his testimony on the air, he often did in letters he would send to people. Author Amy Hollingsworth wrote The Simple Faith of Mister Rogers, and shared that he would pray before each show asking God to let His word be heard through what was spoken. Hollingsworth remembers him saying “I’m so convinced that the space between the TV set and the viewer is holy ground…What we put on TV can, by the Holy Spirit be translated into what that person needs to hear and see and without the translation of the Holy Spirit, it’s all dross [worthless] as far as I’m concerned.”
It is also documented by biographer Maxwell King in The Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers that Fred Rogers woke up every morning to read the Bible. “Fred Rogers got up every morning between 4:30 and 5:30 A.M. to read the Bible and prepare himself for the day before he went to the Pittsburgh Athletic Association to swim. But Roger’s preparation was not so much professional as it was spiritual: He would study passages of interest from the Bible, and then he would visualize who he would be seeing that day, so that he would be prepared to be as caring and giving as he could be. Fred’s prayers in those early morning sessions were not for success or accomplishment, but rather for the goodness of heart to be the best person he could be in each of the encounters he would have that day.”
Fred Rogers demonstrated to a world desperately in need of love, how to really love your neighbor, not only with his words but with his actions as well.
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And ha second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” – Matthew 22:36-40
Mister Rogers Quotes
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood starring Tom Hanks as Mister Rogers recently released in theaters. Here are some quotes from Fred Rogers that not only will bring back some childhood memories for many of us, but could also be used in a sermon, or a teaching lesson.
I’m fairly convinced that the Kingdom of God is for the broken-hearted. You write of ‘powerlessness.’ Join the club, we are not in control. God is.
Understanding love is the hardest thing in the world.
It’s not so much what you have in this life that matters. It’s what we do with what we have.
Try your best to make goodness attractive. That’s one of the toughest assignments you’ll ever be given.
Love isn’t a state of perfect caring. It is an active noun like struggle. To love someone is to strive to accept that person exactly the way he or she is, right here and now.
Little by little we human beings are confronted with situations that give us more and more clues that we are not perfect.
It’s a mistake to think that we have to be lovely to be loved by human beings or by God.
One of my wise teachers, Dr. Orr, told me, ‘There is only one thing evil cannot stand, and that is forgiveness.
Confronting our feelings and giving them appropriate expression always takes strength, not weakness.
Forgiveness is a strange thing. It can sometimes be easier to forgive our enemies than our friends. It can be hardest of all to forgive people we love. Like all of life’s important coping skills, the ability to forgive and the capacity to let go of resentments most likely take root very early in our lives.
Anyone who does anything to help a child in his life is a hero to me.
We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility. It’s easy to say “It’s not my child, not my community, not my world, not my problem.” Then there are those who see the need and respond. I consider those people my heroes.
Mister Rogers was Fred Rogers’ mission field. – Joanne Rogers (Fred Rogers wife)
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. – John 15:12