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Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker delivers the commencement address at Benedictine College in Kansas.YouTube

(LifeSiteNews) — Star NFL kicker Harrison Butker delivered an inspiring commencement address to the 2024 graduates at Benedictine College this past Saturday.

Most media outlets have focused on Butker’s decision to admonish U.S. President Joe Biden as well as American bishops for failing to preach and live out the Catholic faith in its entirety, especially during COVID.

“They were motivated by fear… they showed by their actions, intentional or unintentional, that the sacraments don’t actually matter,” he said.

But Butker also spoke glowingly about the Traditional Latin Mass, which he referred to as “the TLM.”

“I would challenge each of you to pick a place to move where the TLM is readily available,” he added. “As you prepare to enter into the workforce, it is extremely important that you actually think about the places you are moving to. Who is the bishop? What kind of parishes are there? Do they offer the TLM and have priests who embrace their priestly vocation? Cost of living must not be the only arbiter of your choices, for a life without God is not a life at all, and the cost of salvation is worth more than any career.”

A three-time Super Bowl champion, Butker, 28, has repeatedly used his celebrity status to give glory to God and share his love for the Catholic faith, the Latin Mass in particular, which he knows how to serve. Last year, he spoke about the importance of having children during the commencement address he gave at Georgia Tech, his alma matter. He has also previously pushed back against Pope Francis’ decision to issue Traditiones Custodes, which severely restricts priests from offering the Latin Mass. Butker hit on both of those themes Saturday

“What I think is misunderstood is that people who attend the TLM do so out of pride or preference. I can only speak to my own experience, but for most people… this simply is not true,” he said.

“I do not attend the TLM because I think I am better than others, or for the smells and bells, or even for the love of Latin. I attend the TLM because I believe, just as the God of the Old Testament was pretty particular in how He wanted to be worshiped, the same holds true for us today,” he also remarked.

Benedictine College is located in northeast Kansas in the town of Atchison. A little more than 2,000 undergraduates are enlisted at the school, which bears the endorsement of The Cardinal Newman Society.

Butker, who is married and has two children with his wife Isabella, also noted how the Latin Mass brought “order” into his life. He advised his audience to “rekindle your knowledge and adherence to many of the church’s greatest traditions, you will see how much more colorful and alive your life can and should be.”

Butker also touched on culture war issues like abortion, LGBT and politics in his 20-minute speech, which drew several rounds of applause.

“Our own nation is led by a man who publicly and proudly proclaims his Catholic faith, but at the same time is delusional enough to make the sign of the cross during a pro-abortion rally. He has been so vocal in his support for the murder of innocent babies that I’m sure to many people it appears that you can be both Catholic and pro-choice,” Butker said.

“He is not alone,” he added. “From the man behind the COVID lockdowns to the people pushing dangerous gender ideologies onto the youth of America, they all have a glaring thing in common. They are Catholic. This is an important reminder that being Catholic alone doesn’t cut it.”

Butker, who is unvaccinated, also warned about the impact of the U.S. House of Representatives’ decision to pass the misleadingly named “Anti-Semitism Awareness Act” as well as what he called the “tyranny of diversity, equity and inclusion.”

Butker further urged female graduates to be aware of the “diabolic lies” told to them about careerism while thanking God that his own wife embraced “one of the most important titles of all: homemaker.”

Butker was signed by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2017 after being waived by the Carolina Panthers. The franchise won its third Super Bowl championship in five years in 2024. He is currently the second-most accurate kicker in league history with an 89.1 percent conversion rate. During the Chiefs’ White House visit in June 2023, Butker wore a tie that read, “vulnerari praesidio,” which means “protect the most vulnerable” in Latin. He also wore a gold pin replicating the precise size and shape of a 10-week-old preborn baby.

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