Sport in Local communities

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written by Michael Short

The Devon and Cornwall Division recently had a Youth Gathering. As part of the event we were able to experience different workshops and I attended the Sports mission option.

In the workshop we discussed what sport meant to us and how it fitted into the whole of our lives. This might be in school, college, work, youth club or social gatherings. This created open discussions of how we could use sport within our communities to connect with people and ultimately make disciples through Sport.

‘How do we inspire others to do their best and be better than they can be?’

We watched a clip from the movie ‘Invictus’ which saw the President of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, trying to change the culture of his country and unite a nation, using sport as the catalyst.

His questions to skipper Francois Pienaar were really poignant asking ‘how do we inspire others to do their best and be better than they can be?’ and ‘how do we inspire others to greatness when nothing less will do?’.

By using discussion questions, we came to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter what our ability, race, age or gender, we can all be inclusive and included in sport and use it for good.

We finalised our discussions with how we can make an impact in our local communities by using sport. This could involve going to your local park and creating enjoyable environments for people feel included in, just one example.

Sport is universal, like playing music. People from all over the world can come together and take part in the same game or sport.

Of course, not all of the gathering was spent talking about sports mission, there was a physical element too. We all had a go at the ‘Bring Sally Up, Bring Sally Down’ challenge, which helped us to think about the highs and lows in our lives and how sometimes life might be a struggle. We concluded the workshop with an inclusive yet competitive game of hockey in which all had fun!

Hebrews 12:12-13 (The Message)

So don’t sit around on your hands! No more dragging your feet! Clear the path for long-distance runners so no one will trip and fall, so no one will step in a hole and sprain an ankle. Help each other out. And run for it!

Michael Short

Plymouth Exeter Hall, Whitleigh