The focus of a ninja was at one time their secret in directing passengers. But at a time when people face various occupations on a daily basis, the work of a ninja may require exposure on national television to give the public confidence. This is a task that “Papal Ninja” understands more than others.
Sean Bryan, a Catholic alumni who was a member of the Pierce Men’s Gymnastics Team from 2006 to 2008, is about to accept the challenges posed by the new season of the “American Ninja Warrior” in which he is a fierce competitor. He competes as a papal ninja, a nickname that accurately describes both his exceptional athleticism and his strong Catholic faith. Brian has been a major contender for some of America’s most popular television series since 2016.
Reflecting on his dramatic journey as a ninja from his time as a foot student, he sat down and gave The Daily California an interesting look at the show’s new season.
As the season began, Brian admitted he was “the most nervous” ever – for good reason. As one of the few “live” Hollywood products during the COVID-19 epidemic, “American Ninja Warrior” took strict precautionary measures to ensure the safety of audience members and rivals.
Regional qualifiers were canceled and, instead, selected contestants gathered in St. Louis for a short period of two weeks. On top of social distance and face-to-face order, contestants had to undergo standard checks and health checks during filming. Disinfecting the barriers after each run is also an important process.
During the regular seasons a live studio was replaced by video calls from supporters of the biggest energy rivals, which had their advantages for Brian.
“(The video call) was much closer than it really is,” Brian said. “You can talk to them before you start, and instead they’ll get stuck in four or five obstacles.”
This season’s competition will change – especially with a new rule that allows competitors with similar backgrounds on teams, to give their teammates the opportunity to defend themselves – a former college gymnast like Brian could perform better. Not only is the body structure he has developed over the years beneficial, but how he handles stress – going into the zone with a vengeance – has prepared Brian as an exceptional ninja. An important difference between the “American Ninja Warrior” and the gymnastics he raises is that he quickly adapts to obstacles you have never touched before.
“Don’t test the barrier before you compete,” Brian said. “Gymnastics has very few variables, whereas in ninja, you never know how obstacles work.”
The unique culture of foot gymnastics is also an important component that created the papal ninja. In addition to the team’s tradition of appreciating the sport as an artistic endeavor rather than pure competition, Brian found teammates who shared the same interest in gymnastics, giving him a place where he could truly be himself. It was at this point that he discovered new compliments about his religion and faith.
“The call is coming, and I have made a few promises: one, I will always be myself; two, I’m going to get a girlfriend right now; three, to take my faith even more seriously,” Sean recalled. “In the process, I found great joy and respect in the ministry. . “
Changing gears from his initial plan to become a business consultant with his degree in physics, he felt a call from God, decided to engage in the Catholic ministry, and later earned a master’s degree in the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology. Foot degree.
His faith eventually turned him into a papal ninja.
The series of events that led to Brian’s time in “American Ninja Warrior” really sounds like a perfect storm. When he saw fellow former gymnast Kyle Litto on the show, it gave him some interest in the show, in fact participating in the show seemed unbelievable to him at first.
“Two years before I applied I started watching the show and thought‘ maybe I can do it ’,” Brian said. “But I never took it too seriously – it’s a TV show, who really applies to these things?”
However, within a week or two, he received messages from four different people who had no contact with each other, urging him to try the show. On top of that, finding a gym with a ninja training program in his neighborhood convinced him that all of these events were really a call from God, calling him a ninja.
Once Brian decided to accept the challenge, his progress came faster than expected. Not only did he endure the highly selective process of appearing on TV, but two seasons later, he became one of the three finalists to reach the highest level in the ninth season. Instead of enjoying fame and increasing recognition, he wants to use them to fight against some stereotypes of religious people in contemporary secular America.
“I tried to use that site to motivate people and help build their confidence,” Brian said. “Being religious does not mean sitting in a church all day. If faith does not take a firm place in your life, why is that? ”
During epidemics, Papal not only competed in his work as a ninja. One of his observations is that people accept divinity more than ever before. As the COVID-19 epidemic has made death a more immediate matter for people, with increased isolation due to prolonged practice locking, Brian has received numerous inquiries into how to understand the situation.
“At the beginning of the epidemic, I started writing a book,” Brian said. “Many of the inquiries are identical, so I began to put together a document that answered these questions slowly.”
In addition to providing spiritual assistance to those in need, Zoom also addressed current racial issues by hosting the conference. He invited famous guests including fellow ninja Naji Richardson, former NFL player Anthony Trucks and Dr. Bennett Omalu, among whom the “concussion” was based on the film, to provide some perspectives.
“Being a papal ninja at this point is about helping me realize my own business and making me accountable in front of people and responding to their needs,” Brian said.
In a way, during the epidemics, the secret missions performed by the ninjas are now being brought to the national stage, reaching the most needy. A ninja’s new mission is to show off their efforts on the “American Ninja Warrior” to reach out to more people in need and expand support.
Whether on the show or in the ministry, Bryan’s purpose will always be the same: to be for the people he needs most. For foot alumni, being the perfect combination of athletic stardom, religiosity and compassion for others, being a papal ninja may be the most appropriate career.
“Be brave and go deep,” he said. “Courage helps one to overcome fear, and asking a deeper question helps one to answer in a loving way.”
Through his fight against the “American Ninja Warrior” this season, the brave Papal Ninja will run to the rescue with his promise. Fans will be able to watch NBC on Monday at 8 p.m.
Contact Jericho Yamaguma [email protected].