Let us f@%#ing pray: Ramsay emerges a Christian role model
Gordon Ramsay is almost as famous for peppering his sentences with profanities as he is for his culinary wizardry.
But evangelical Christians are now looking to harness the popularity of the tough-talking TV chef to stir up religious fervour among teenagers.
One of Britain's best-selling faith magazines has urged preachers to use the life story of the craggy-faced cook to inspire young worshippers – comparing his setbacks to the suffering of the Biblical character Job.
The editor of Youthwork magazine claims Ramsay's triumph over adversity is a modern-day tale of redemption.
Christian writer Martin Saunders insists the Scot's televised tirades of swearing and blaspheming did not stop him being an "inspirational" figure. He also risked provoking the wrath of the famously hard-working and short-tempered chef by claiming his rise to fame could be attributed to "divine inspiration".
The mainstream Christian journal, which carries adverts from the Church of Scotland, has published a "ready-to-use" Sunday school sermon which revolves around the life and times of the Michelin star-holder.
It states: "Gordon Ramsay had dreamed of becoming a professional football player throughout his childhood – and when a Glasgow Rangers scout spotted him, it seemed all his dreams had come true.
"For three years he played for the youth team of a club that was consistently at the top of Scottish championship, but there was a problem.
"One of Gordon's knees was consistently giving him problems and eventually doctors told him that it wasn't healing properly. His professional football career was over before it had really begun."
The sermon then tells of how Ramsay faced tough times deciding what he could do before turning his life around.
"Thanks to his determination and hard work, Gordon is now a well-known celebrity chef with several TV programmes.
"It seems strange to think that had it not been for a sad and heartbreaking problem, Gordon's true gifting might never have come to the surface."
The article includes a list of questions for Church workers should to youngsters, including:
• Imagine you are in the position Gordon found himself when he found out he would never be able to play football again. How would you feel?
• Does God has a plan for us? Does it include our careers?
• Do you think Gordon was able to see the "bigger picture" and not feel angry about giving up football?
• Terrible things happen to Job in the Bible, but he doesn't give up on God – is this how a Christian should act when bad things happen?
Saunders, who penned the piece on Ramsay, acknowledged his selection would raise eyebrows in some quarters.
He said: "The fact that Gordon swears does not prevent him from being a good role model for young people. His drive, ambition and passion for bringing on another generation of young chefs are things to be admired and respected."
The editor confirmed he had not consulted with The F-Word host before using him as an example to young Christians. He said: "We would hope he would be encouraged that we are saying positive things about him and seeing him as an inspiration."
A spokeswoman for Ramsay was surprised to learn he was likely to be the subject of discussion in churches around the UK. "Gordon is in America just now, but this is something that I will certainly be bringing to his attention," she said.
Ramsay has previously confirmed that he has a quiet, private faith. He revealed he had prayed when his son Jack was found to have a small hole in his heart and about six times every year he and his wife Tana go to the church in Chelsea where they were married in 1996.
Last year, he said: "I want the kids to understand that there is a God and that more times than not we need to turn to him for help."
Ramsay's expletive-strewn show Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares was strongly criticised by the Roman Catholic Church in Australia last year.
Obey the laws of Gordon
Gordon Ramsay's 10 Commandments:
1 In my kitchen you will do as you are f****** well told.
2 Thou shall not use my image (unless I have signed a five-year merchandising deal with your chief executive).
3 Do not claim anything in my shows was staged or I will sue thy sorry arse for all it is worth.
4 Thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbour (unless it's that bloody arse of a food critic AA Gill).
5 Thou shall not worship false gods like Delia Smith, Nigella Lawson or Heston Blumenthal.
6 Thou shall not refer me to as "craggy faced". I'm rugged and manly.
7 Respect your elders, apart from that stuck-up old tart Joan Collins.
8 You may only curse or blaspheme on days of the week that end with a 'y'.
9 Be respectful to vegetarians and always remove their sandals before basting them with brown sugar and serving them up for dinner.
10 Be kind to lesser beings. Dispatch cockroaches, snooping tabloid journalists and restaurant reviewers humanely.