Blind Christian surfer realizes dream, surfs Pipeline


By Craig James

Derek Rabelo

Walking On Water Films has produced 11 documentary films including Bethany Hamilton’s story, “Heart of a Soul Surfer.” ” Beyond Sight: The Derek Rabelo Story” is their latest project with S4J Hawaii Productions.

The film tells the story of a blind, 17 year-old from Brazil who pursues his dream of surfing Pipeline on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii. The documentary takes viewers through Derek’s three-year journey of grueling mental, physical and spiritual training. As Derek perseveres towards his goal of surfing Pipeline, he inspires the best surfers in the world including Kelly Slater, Gerry Lopez, Tom Curren, Damien Hobgood, Lakey Peterson and others – who star in Beyond Sight.

“Pipeline is basically the ultimate wave in a lot of ways – just a short, intense, dangerous wave that’s close to the beach,” said Kelly Slater, 11-time World Champion surfer. “Many surfers with sight do not venture out even after they see that others can do it.”

Derek’s story is one that exemplifies that the best journeys in life are walked by faith, and not by sight. “I hope that when people see the movie the eyes of their hearts will be opened to Jesus Christ.” said Walking on Water founder Bryan Jennings.

Jennings along with S4J Hawaii Productions are determined to complete production on the feature film for release in Spring of 2013. Walking On Water is enlisting an army of volunteers to help spread the word through the social media fund raising platform, and other such social networking tools as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blogs, YouTube, Vimeo and InstaGram. For more information on Beyond Sight, visit

About Walking On Water: Walking On Water is a non-profit 501 C 3 Action Sports Ministry. They have been dedicated to sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with this generation since 1995. Walking on Water Films is the premier production company for faith-based action sports feature films that tell powerful faith-based stories of athletes in surf, skateboard and snowboard sports. Through its unique distribution model of outreach screenings, more than 500,000 people in over 30 countries have been heard the message of Jesus Christ in movie theaters, churches, outdoor venues and convention centers. For more information, visit Walking On Water is also a part of the Luis Palau Alliance Ministries, a fellowship of 455 evangelists and evangelistic ministries.

Beyond Sight Film Synopsis: Amidst the small beautiful city of Guarapari, Brazil, Derek Rabelo’s father prayed that his son would become a famous professional surfer. Unfortunately on May 25th 1992, his prayer seemed unanswered when Derek was born blind. Seventeen years later Derek decided that despite his blindness he still wanted to surf and that he wanted to surf Pipeline on the North Shore of Oahu. Join Derek as he perseveres towards his goal of surfing Pipeline. For more information on Beyond Sight, visit