Guest post by Bob Whitsitt, CUMC Director of Serving & Outreach
What happens when you combine the sport a nation loves to play, a group who sees sports as a natural means for outreach and then add in a group of coaches who consider their role to disciple and mentor the kids they work with?
This summer, a team from CUMC headed to Zambia and watched it all unfold as a local ministry, area churches, the Zambia Sports Ministry Coalition and Ubabalo (a ministry of CYCAS) came together for a weeklong soccer tournament. The tournament attracted 12 local schools and more than 500 athletes. Each day jump-started with a morning devotional by Pastor Phiri, followed by competition and a time of sharing with each team after their game. The pastors and our group took turns talking about the game, life and the fact that God loves each one of them…weaving the Gospel into the conversation. At the end of the week, more than 250 commitments were made for Christ with names for on-going discipleship.
“ I have never seen anything like it!” commented Pastor Phiri. “Our usual outreach is a tent revival with a guest pastor, and we invite people to attend…in this case we simply engaged people doing what they love to do…futbol!”
I must admit I’ve never seen anything like it either! Question is… how do we do the same thing here? We’ve invited a special guest speaker to share with us and invite you to join us:
Sports, Games & the Kingdom with John Yip | Sunday, Nov. 4, 11 a.m.,* Beaty Gym As a start we have invited John Yip, Global Facilitator for CYCAS, to come and help us understand the possibilities. CYCAS is a global partnership of people and organizations committed to evangelizing and discipling young people in creative and relevant ways through sports and games. To-date they are in 170 nations impacting more than 10 million children.
*Stop by anytime between 8 a.m. -12:30 p.m. for the Athletics Ministry Open House to see the newly renovated Beaty gym/fitness center and talk with staff and volunteers about all that is offered through CUMC Athletics Ministry.