Professor Carl A. Matthews is the head instructor and founder of the Faith Fighters Martial Arts Academy, one of the few Christian Karate school in the Maryland area. He is a 20-year veteran of the Army/National Guard (retired / Staff Sargent) and is also a retired Corporal of 21 years with the Maryland Natural Resources Police.
In 2008 Professor Matthews developed the style of TEN-DO with the principles of faith, honor and respect and keeping GOD first in training. Ten-Do means “Heavens Way” in Japanese. It has the components of Japanese Karate-Do, Judo and Jujitsu. Ten-do is a unique blend of various martial arts systems including Sho Ko Jitsu, Tae kwon Do, Shotokan, Sho Rin Ryu, and Yoshukai Karate. In 2011 received 9 Dan and 2014 10 Dan from the United States Head of Family Martial Arts Association International Supreme Elite Warriors Council Diploma of Title Recognition and Rank Registration.
Professor Matthews has been a student of the martial arts for 41 years. He began his training at the age of 11 in Baltimore, MD, under the direction of Mr. Paul A. Books for a short time (Shogun Karate Club). At age 17 he began training in the Karate Style of Moo Kwon Do (under Sensei Gerald Jackson) at the Warlord Academy of Martial Arts in Baltimore, Maryland. After receiving his black belt June 1983 in October, he opened his first Karate School at the Calverton Recreation Center.
In 1984, one year later, at the age of 20 he entered the United States Army 1984. While stationed in Giessen Germany he met, and began training with, the late Master Ronald Parks and the late Shihan David Bauzo (Yoshukai Karate Do) at N.A.T.O Force Karate School. During the course of that tour in Germany, he became the assistant instructor and received a 2nd Degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
After returning to the United States he resumed his role as a Moo Kwon Do instructor at the Warlord’s Karate School where he eventually attained a 7th Degree black belt.During that time, he became an officer for the Morgan State University Police Department. A few years later, he moved on to become an officer/corporal (and firearms instructor) in the Maryland Natural Resources Police Department.
In 2004 he received a 1st Degree black belt in the martial arts style of Chidokwan under the direction of Masters Billy and James Booker of Booker’s Martial Arts. One year later, in 2005, he began training in the martial arts style of Sho Ko Jitsu (which was founded by the late great Professor Chris Miller and encompasses a blend of Karate, Judo, and Jujitsu). He attained his black belt in Sho Ko Jitsu in 2011. Professor Miller was the Sensei that he was the closest to. They developed a very close friendship and personal bond throughout those years of training, and it broke his heart when Professor Miller passed away in 2019. In May 2021 he was promoted to 6 Dan by Grandmaster Annette Miller the wife of Professor Miler.
Over the course of 40 years, Professor Matthews has trained countless students in over 10 martial arts schools in the United States and abroad. He believes that Martial Arts is not just hobby but a way of life. His passion for teaching comes from his deep belief that building strong moral and spiritual character enables a person to better deal with life’s challenges. His school practices the art of “Ten-Do”, and his principles are all the result of his vision from God. He continues to teach with the Spirit of Christ as his foundation.
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