Legendary Football Coach & Devout Catholic Lou Holtz Awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom

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@realDonaldTrump, Twitter

Congratulations, Lou Holtz! 🙌

President Donald Trump awarded former Notre Dame football coach and devout pro-life Catholic Lou Holtz the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Thurs., Dec. 3 at the White House.

The press release describes “this prestigious award” as “the Nation’s highest civilian honor,” to “individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.”

The award recognizes Holtz as “one of the greatest football coaches of all time for his unmatched accomplishments on the gridiron, but he is also a philanthropist, author, and true American patriot.”

The release adds, “Holtz was awarded honorary doctorates from the University of Notre Dame, the University of South Carolina, Trine University, and the Franciscan University of Steubenville” for his accomplishments on and off the field.

In the video below, a narrator reads Pres. Trump’s description of Holtz’s incredible coaching record, as well as his off-the-field life.

“He’s a staple of sports television, a powerful motivational speaker, a devout Catholic, and a dedicated philanthropist.”

Here’s the video below:

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Here’s another video of the event:

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Holtz described his Catholic faith in an interview with the National Catholic Register as “what brings meaning and lasting happiness to life.”

He also said “every single day” as a coach at the University of Notre Dame was “very special because there were so many opportunities to encounter and live out the Catholic faith. Mass and confession were always available, and you could pray the Rosary at the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes, which is a smaller-sized replica of the original in France.”

Holtz adds that the Sisters of Notre Dame at St. Aloysius Grade School “influenced my life tremendously.”

“This was due to the fact that they encouraged you always to make sure that God is the focus of your life, and they didn’t allow you to do anything except to the very best of your ability.

“When this is passed on to you in your formative years, I can’t begin to tell you how important it is. I owe the good sisters so much for what they taught me and will be forever grateful for their selfless dedication.”

[See also: 15 Encouraging Saint Quotes to Give You Peace, Hope, & Strength in Difficult Times]

[See also: Miraculous: Rosary Allegedly Forms While Priest Pours Water During Baptism in Amazing Photo]