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God’s Invisible Hand at Work

Hugh and his wife visiting MGRC in Tanzania

Written by: Mary Flieller

Hugh IIlsley, former business executive and founder of Identity Sports is a generous and long-time supporter of Maasai Girls Rescue Center. Identity Sports is a Christian Outreach Ministry dedicated to impacting lives by sharing inspirational stories from professional athletes who have found their true identities in Christ.

Outreach has been a big part of Hugh’s life since he became a Christian. Hugh believes strongly in sharing the good news of Christ. He also firmly believes in the power of God’s invisible hand and its ability to connect people together, just as it connected Hugh to Rick Morro, Founder of MGRC.

In 2006, Hugh was looking for a digitizing service to transfer family videos to DVDs. Rick’s store was recommended and soon Hugh found himself talking to the store owner/manager. Hugh learned that Rick was a retired executive and avid golfer. At that time, Hugh’s outreach was focused on professional golfers and so he invited Rick to hear golf pro, Tom Lehman speak. Rick accepted the invitation and attended the event. This “chance” meeting eventually led to Rick getting involved in a Men’s Bible Study Group. Rick’s participation in the study then led him to joining a mission trip to Tanzania.

Rick and Hugh at a ball game

As the saying goes, the rest is history. Rick returned to Scottsdale and after seeing the dire conditions the Maasai girls endured, he sold everything, and moved to Tanzania. He began his own outreach and sharing the news of Christ…not with professional athletes, but to the poorest of the poor, girls from the Maasai tribe who were abused, neglected, and abandoned.

Hugh has seen God’s invisible hand at work from MGRC’s humble beginnings to the thriving ecoVillage, ecoFarm and soon to be ecoLodge. In 2021, Hugh walked the Grand Canyon to raise awareness and funds for MGRC. As a sponsor, Hugh and his wife, Joanne, also experience the joy of watching the girls blossom into strong, happy well-adjusted individuals.

Hugh’s Grand Canyon Rim-to-Rim Hike for MGRC

Hugh and his wife have been to Tanzania several times as part of mission trips through Scottsdale Bible. I recently had a chance to talk with Hugh and I asked what impressed him the most and why he and Joanne support MGRC: “It is clear to us the hand of God is at work through Rick. By living among the Maasai tribe and learning the Tanzanian ways, Rick has determined the best path toward financial independence for MGRC girls. Everything from the ecoFarm, eco Village and soon to be ecoLodge is solely for the girls’ well-being and independence. Rick asks for nothing for himself.”

God’s invisible hand brought Hugh and Rick together. They share the passion and commitment to sharing the good news of Jesus Christ. While they minister to different audiences in different ways, the mission is the same…to share God’s goodness and love.

To learn more about Hugh’s most recent outreach event and how the invisible hand of God continues to work through Identity Sports, click here.

To learn more about supporting MGRC, here.

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