By Jessica Easthope
Dan Venezia is not what you picture when you think of someone who could fall victim to coronavirus.
He’s strong, in shape and a former professional athlete, but none of that mattered when Dan contracted COVID-19 last month and was being wheeled into the emergency room, gasping for air.
“After three days of aches and pains I had a 103 fever, a dry cough, shortness of breath, I had just about every symptom you read and hear about,” said Dan.
Pleading with God, Dan made a promise in his darkest hour.
“I want to be able to help more, I want to be able to give more and shine your light on the darkness,” Dan said.
It would be his mission to spread a message of hope and faith, if he made it out.
“I’m very grateful to be able to share this story in an effort to help others who are not only struggling with the disease,” Dan said,” but to inspire others to be closer to God.”
Dan’s faith has always been strong. Having grown up in a Catholic family in Brooklyn and attended Our Lady of Angels, he credits his mother with building his religious foundation. That foundation carried him to see his dreams come true, playing three seasons with the Minnesota Twins.
Now Dan’s getting back to his roots during recovery. Though he says his background as a personal trainer and former pro-athlete, as well as hydroxychloroquine played a role in overcoming the virus, it was his faith and the power of prayer that pulled him through.
“When you put it all in God’s hands you give him every victory and every defeat,” Dan said.
Now he’s living his promise to God. Dan has done countless TV and radio interviews, promoted his message on Instagram and is even writing a book about his experience with COVID-19 and his faith.
He’s calling people to be proud of their belief in Christ and most importantly, come back to the Church.
“I am out there shining a light that the church is a beacon of hope, especially during a pandemic like this,” Dan said.
He told God he wasn’t done shining his light in the darkness, now his work is just beginning.