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This is the Truth Network. Welcome to another episode Q&A with Kolov, the Devil's Nightmare. And today I've got a special interview, Chris Whaley. Chris, welcome to the Q&A show with Kolov. Hey man, this is great to be able to turn their channels there and ask you questions. I think that's pretty awesome.
Absolutely. And Chris Whaley, aka The Masked Saint. There's a whole story behind that.
We'll give you a condensed version on the Q&A show. But The Masked Saint, Chris, a pastor, a professional wrestler, and a vigilante all rolled up into one package here, but also a husband, a father, a grandfather. Chris, let's just start with a little backdrop on your family. And you're calling in today from the Sunshine State.
Tell our listeners who Chris Whaley is. Well, I'm a guy that has been blessed beyond measure in so many different ways. Grew up in Florida and very poor family, a sickly kid in and out of the hospital. God finally got that under control. And when I was growing up, one of my big things was watching professional wrestling.
Eddie Graham, the great Malenko and all those guys. And after my mom came to know the Lord and things changed in our home, I started going to church, met the young lady that ultimately would become my wife for 47 years and got to graduate from college with her. We have two wonderful daughters who were married to godly young men, six grandchildren, had the opportunity to wrestle for 10 years and have been a pastor since 1988. And I'm still speaking everywhere I get the opportunity. I preached last Sunday and the Sunday before.
And just looking forward to every opportunity that God gives me. Wow. It's quite a resume and somewhat I can relate to a lot of your story really in the sense of talking about growing up in a poor home. I grew up in welfare, grew up in the projects of Minneapolis and in my case, a single mom but with several siblings and four daughters. You got two, I got four, you got six grandkids. I just had recently my 10th, my daughter Kendra and her husband Brandon out in suffering for Jesus out in Maui, Hawaii. Wow.
Just had their second daughter. And then of course the wrestling or as we've known in the south, the wrestling. You've heard that once or twice, right?
Ain't you one of them wrasslers? And then the ministry and just so there is a lot of relatability there. But I want to highlight one thing you said because I remember, you've shared some of your story with me before and if I'm not mistaken, correct me if I'm wrong, but you battled polio when you were a youngster. That's one of the physical infirmities you had, right? Polio?
Right, right. I was in the fourth grade and had polio. I was in the hospital for three months, I used to say, and my mom and dad bought the second floor at the one or eight in the hospital because I was in there so long. But I had a wonderful godly doctor who was able, with God's help, to get me back on the road to recovery.
It was rough, had to learn to walk all over again, but you know, I made it very, very, very blessed and thankful for everything that God has done for me. You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com. Nikita Kolop and I am here with a huge announcement, like big, big announcement. Man Up Men's Conference, Morningstar Ministries, Fort Mill, South Carolina, August 25th to the 27th.
You're thinking, that's a ways away. No, not too soon to sign up. What a lineup of speakers we have. The Benham Brothers, David and Jason Benham, All Star, NBA All Star, Al Wood is speaking, World Wrestling Champion, The Total Package Lex Luger, Chris Reed, Rick Joyner, Delta Force Commander, General, Lieutenant General, Jerry Boykin retired, yours truly, Nikita Kolop, world renowned evangelist, Frank Shelton. Register today. It is live. M Star Events, mstarevents.com slash man up. Go get registered today.
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You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com. And so that's amazing, I mean, to overcome, you know, those type of infirmities, if you will, and go on to have about a 10-year wrestling career? Your wrestling career was about 10 years? Yeah, 1978 to 1988.
Of course, it was never on the, never on the level of Nikita Kolop. I mean, I wrestled in some, some pretty crazy places, but I just never turned down an opportunity. Anytime I could get in the ring and work, I wanted to do it. The last half of my career was better than the first half because got to work with some great people out in Texas whenever I was going to seminary at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. And so very thankful for that time there and left from there to become a pastor. So you were called, you were called into the ministry, hold on, going to the seminary, but like kind of, would we call it moonlighting as a professional wrestler at the same time? Yeah. Would that be fair to say?
Yeah. My wife was a high school math teacher. And so she was teaching math at one of the high schools there in the Fort Worth area. And our two little girls were, one little girl was in preschool and my other one was in second grade.
And so I was a seminary student, dad in the daytime, and then got to wrestle at night. That's the both worlds. That's amazing. And under the hood, like as the mass saint, yes? Right. Yep.
Yep. No, actually the saint, the mass saint came about because of the book. But whenever I worked, I worked as the saint. The saint, but under a mask. Yep. Under the hood.
Under the hood. The saint. I love it.
I love it. And, you know, I appreciate your humility about obviously, you know, working and we've talked and I mean, you know, you worked with some great guy, Bruiser Brody and King Parr, Ice Parsons, right? And yeah, the Iceman.
I got to work against the Freebirds. Jack Roberts is one of the greatest guys in the world to work with. Yeah. And Ultimate Warrior, right? And Undertaker. And so you were in the ring with some pretty good heavyweights there. And I know you were on the indie scene for a long time.
Now, the independent scene has garnered much more respect in today's world than back in the days of territories, right? And we don't have time to go into all of that today, but we're just going to have to get you, in fact, if you want to hear more of Chris's story, you know, he mentioned a book, the mass, a movie, he had handed me a movie, kind of somewhat of his life story and the book goes into more detail. Go pick up a copy of his book, a copy of the Mass Saint movie. Chris, what's your website? Where could people find that?
It's themasssaint.com and that's M-A-S-K-E-D, themasssaint.com. So go to his website and order the book, order the movie. I would tell you, you'll, especially if you're a wrestling fan out there listening, you'll enjoy Chris's story. And boy, there's so much more to his story.
And when I say he was not only a masked wrestler, he was a masked pastor, he was a vigilante out there and correcting the wrongs and making things right out there in the world, outside of the wrestling ring. And so, in fact, go check out Chris's interview on the Man Up show sometime, you won't be disappointed. And so, okay, Chris, so this is, there's so much more to your story, but this is called the Q&A with Kolov and you get the opportunity to ask me questions.
And so, I don't know what they are. I know you told me you put a few questions together, but let's turn the table now and let's flip it around. And what's your first question? Okay, my first one is, who was the greatest influence on you from wrestling and from ministry?
Oh, okay. Two-part question. We'll start with the wrestling first.
I've got to give credit to where credit is due. Obviously, anyone who knows my story and the way I broke in, I won't go into all that. If you want more of that story, you'll have to go buy my book, right? Nikita, A Tale of the Ring of Redemption. Just go to kolov.net, buy that book and you'll get the full story. But out of the gate, Ivan Kolov, Uncle Iban, and Don Curnodle were certainly instrumental. I mean, they talk about making a sacrifice with the big behemoth, Russian menace, nightmare, Nikita Kolov.
Because the day I broke in, well, really for the next couple of three months, we would travel to the towns early, get there two, three hours early. And I'd say they bump and thump all over the ring, teaching me the mechanics of wrestling. I'd sit in their corner and watch their world tag team title match every night. And then on the drive home, we talk about the old school psychology of wrestling. And so that's how I cut my teeth. And it was literally on the job training. So lots of credit to them. But I'd be remiss if I didn't mention names like Ricky the Dragon, Steamboat, Nature Boy, Ric Flair, The American Dream, Death to Roll, The Tower, Power Tooth, We To Be, Thow It, If You Will.
Yeah. You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com. Hi, Nikita Kolov. Be sure to check out The Man Up Show, now available on television, broadcast, and podcast. Go to monistartv.com or the Truth Radio Network.
Check out your local listings or better yet, download the Truth Network app today. If you would like to support Kolov for Christ Ministries, for a gift of $25, Nikita will send you his two CDs, Adoration and Declaration. For a gift of $50, Nikita will include his book, Wrestling with Success. And for a gift of $100 or more, Nikita will include a signed copy of his newly updated life story, A Tale of the Ring and Redemption.
Go to www.kolov.net and donate today. You're listening to the Truth Network and truthnetwork.com. And Rock and Roll Express, and I mean, just a number of guys, Chris, that I got the privilege of working with very, very, very early in my career that also helped me out.
That also were instrumental in my learning. Okay. Wrestling side, ministry side. You know, surrender my life to the Lord, 11 months after I leave wrestling. And I'm an all in kind of guy. So I'm in church Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday night, revivals.
I mean, I'm there. And my very first pastor was Pastor Tom Whidden, who has gone on to be with the Lord. But then very instrumental, who is still my pastor to this day, Jay Stewart.
Pastor Jay Stewart, 28 plus years later, has been like a mentor in discipling me and pouring into me his wisdom and insight and knowledge and understanding. And then there's been a few others that have come and gone. Some of them along the way, an evangelist from South Africa.
I mean, just so many. Some that I've watched from afar, but have really ministered to me as I've delved into their messages. I mean, Reverend Billy Graham.
I never personally met Reverend Graham, but if I watch one of his messages, I've watched a hundred of them and just gleaned and learned from guys like that. So yeah. So there you go. Awesome.
You ready for number two? I am. Okay.
Is there anything you would have done differently? Hmm. That's a wide open question there, Chris. Wow. That's a wide open. This is shoot, man. This is the real deal here.
Not going to put you over. You got to work for it. I hear you. I mean, at this stage of life, I'll say I'm doing my best to not live with any regrets, right?
I'll just start with that. But if I were to pinpoint something or look back, you know, the old expression is hindsight is 20, 20, and I don't know how true that is. I use that expression.
Others do as well. In other words, I can look back and if the old expression too, if I knew then what I know now, right? I mean, so if there were things I knew in my younger days that I now know, certainly some of the relationships that I have had, I probably would have handled them differently being more experienced now in the area of relationships. And look, I'm still learning and when it comes to relationships, but I would say that just past and prior relationships and friendships that I've had that I probably would have handled somewhat differently had I had more maturity back then.
That's awesome. Well, what was your greatest match? I know you've had thousands, but we've all got that one match that just kind of stands out that, man, that was a great match. Yeah, you know, to narrow it down, certainly the very first one that comes to mind is my first attempt at defeating the nature boy, Rick Flair, for the world heavyweight title, the Great American Bash 1985, the first ever Great American Bash Memorial Stadium, Charlotte, 25, 30, 35,000. The numbers are somewhere in that ballpark, but a lot of people, right?
Just a lot of people. I'm only 13 months into the biz, so the night I debut with an 11-second win in the Dorton Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina, 13 months later, almost to the day, I'm now donning the ring as the challenger to the world champion, already having won the world tag team belts, the world six-man belts, and now I'm wrestling the nature boy, Rick Flair. Certainly comes to mind.
Two others real quick. The War Games, the first ever War Games, is incredibly memorable. The superpowers, the road warriors with precious Paul Ellering against the four horsemen with JJ Dillon was electrifying, and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the best of seven series against Magnum TA, the most talked about of my career. Wow, that's awesome. Well, by the way, you know, I just read today that Flair's making a comeback, in June or July or something like that, going to get in the ring at 73 years, 73 years of age. That's pretty amazing. Not surprised. Yeah. Okay. Tell me, again, I know that other people know about this, but I don't.
Tell me your conversion experience. So the elevator version of it is, I leave wrestling. My last official match, I think, was November 7th, 1992 against Big Van Vader. You know, Vader had a history of, he had a history, kind of a reputation of being reckless. Well, he injured me that night. It was not career ending, for the record, although he injured my neck and I got a hernia.
Now, he was legit about 450 plus pounds, right? And I didn't know it till the next day, but I got a hernia. Had me pressed him, picked him up, you know, for body slam, whatever, and had hernia surgery, was rehabilitating my neck. It was over Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's holiday. And I had already determined in my mind the day I broke in that I'd be out of active wrestling.
By the time I was 35, I was getting ready to turn 34. And I thought, I'm not going to go back for six months, nine months, or even a year. I'm done.
And under my own terms, no fanfare, no glitz, no glory. I just walked away only to find myself at an altar 11 months later. And the reason being, I illustrated, the illustration I'm using right now is a puzzle. You put a puzzle together only to find you got the last piece missing, right? Which means the portrait is not complete without that last piece to the puzzle. It's incomplete. And that's really an illustration of my life at that time.
And really for many people, probably even today, they feel like their life is just incomplete. The missing piece is that personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I did not grow up in Russia. I did not grow up in church. But I knew the story of the man Jesus who had lived, died, crucified, rose again, living at the right hand of the Father. The story had never made the 18-inch trip from my head down to my heart. And I had met a Christian couple through a business venture that I was involved in, invited me to their church.
17 October 1993, I showed up, called them and said, I'll be there. And that was the defining moment of my life when I walked into that church service and walked down to that altar at the end of service, got on my knees, 11 months after wrestling, had an encounter with Jesus that forever changed my life and changed my destiny. And that's the shorter version that set me on a course I never would have ever dreamed of.
Hey, that is awesome brother. And I am so thankful that he did because this part is never going to have retirement like the first part did. That's right. You're going to keep going until Jesus calls you or until he comes back? Amen. That is 100% correct. I can't find retirement in the Bible. You are right. All right.
Yes. I'd really love to know either your favorite verse or favorite passage of scripture. Colossians 1, 10. Colossians 1, 10. Kind of become a life verse for me now.
And in a nutshell, it basically says this, there's four parts to it. My goal today is that I will live a life that's worthy of Jesus. In other words, a life that honors him today and fully please him, not just please him, but fully please him. So my goal is to fully please him today because there's no promise of tomorrow.
So I just got to focus on today. And so through my actions, through my words, and even through my thoughts, and sometimes I got to capture those thoughts and pull them down, those strongholds and vain imaginations and cast them to the foot of the cross. So I want to live a life today that honors him, that's worthy of him, to carry his name, to fully please him in every way, to bear fruit for every good work, part three, to bear good fruit. And last but not least, part four, to grow in the knowledge of him. So I want to grow and mature, bear good fruit every day, at least today and every day, and then fully please him and live a life that's worthy.
Colossians 1 10. Awesome, awesome. All right, here's the last one. Do you watch wrestling today? I don't. Believe it or not, for real, now listen, I follow it by how, I do a lot of autograph signings, legends events, comic cons, personal appearances, like when I just recently met you and you handed me that movie, The Masked Saint, and enjoyed watching that by the way.
And for those of you listening out there, go to his website and get that movie and get his book. But I essentially, when I say I walked away at the end of 1992, I don't know that I could say at this point that I've ever seen a full episode of any wrestling show at all. Now, I've seen bits and pieces and clips and people post things on social media. And again, I have conversations with the fans when I'm out signing their autographs and they kind of keep me up to date and I'll follow a little bit, AEW and Ring of Honor and all the different organizations, but I don't.
I really, I closed the door. I'm still connected. I still love my fans and still connected with them, but just don't watch the product of today.
Yep. You know, that kind of parallels my life too, as far as, you know, the opportunities of meeting fans and talking with them and all, but not watching it. Last time I watched real quick, I was good friends with Blackjack Mulligan and Blackjack was in the hospital over close to me and I went to visit him and these two huge guys were in there and he said, these are my grandsons. I didn't know them, Bray Wyatt and Bo Dallas.
I think he said they work for Vence. So I watched it just to see his grandsons work so I could tell him that, but that was the last time I watched it. Yeah, yeah. And it's again, it's a different product that's produced from what they call the golden era of wrestling, but I'm thankful, still thankful as I know you are for all the fans out there and the support of the fans. And today, Chris Whaley, The Masked Saint on Q&A with Koloff. Go buy his book, go buy his movie. I know you'll be blessed by his life story. And Chris, thanks for being on the Q&A and thank you for your questions today. All right, man. Hey, it's just an honor to be on your show and I sure hope anybody listening that hasn't heard the story of Nikita Koloff, you need to have this guy in your church and have him come and tell his story because you will not regret it and the Lord will do great things.
Well, you are a blessing. I'm going to jump in because I have to ask. Come on, Robbie. I've been listening to all the, but the guy that you slammed on the ground, right? Yeah. His wife went to your church, right? Right, right. Did, did he ever come to the church after that?
Yeah. You know, uh, the movie was a little bit different. Uh, you know, that, that part didn't happen, but, uh, yeah, you know, he came, he was not the same guy after that.
And, uh, of course he, you know, created his family differently. And I would like to hope and pray. I don't, I don't know, but I'd like to hope and pray after I left there to go to my second church that, um, that he eventually came to know the Lord.
I just don't know that answer yet. So in other words, I, you know, as I was just thinking about the whole incident that God is going to be the one that convicts him in the end, of course, you know, obviously he had a bit of a wake-up call in his front yard, but, um, I'm just interested. Awesome. One of the reasons I think that, uh, God let me get into, uh, pro wrestling was because I have such a high pain tolerance. I mean, I can, I can deal with physical pain.
It's the emotional pain that I have trouble with, but the physical pain, you know, I was able to, to deal with that real easy that I guess that's why I was so stupid and did some of the stuff that I did. Well, we, we, we all have our moments, Chris, but Hey, you've been awesome today and I can't thank you enough for carving out some time to, to be with us and look forward to, uh, uh, look forward to, uh, talking with you again here in the near future. Okay.
All right. God bless you, brother. And you keep the faith baby, not the baby face. Hey man, God bless you. Thank you for tuning in to Q and A with Koloff.
Tune in again for another episode. This podcast is made possible by the grace of God and your faithful prayers, support, and generous gifts. May God bless you for your continual contributions.
Go to koloff.net and donate today. Nikita Koloff here and I am excited. Did you hear the huge announcement, the big announcement?
Well, maybe it's a minor announcement. Anyway, Facebook, go look up my new fan page, Nikita Koloff fans and like it and follow today. Nikita Koloff here.
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