Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Getting into the spirit of the Olympics

It’s a fact of life that some things are more ‘newsworthy’ than others. No one really wants to know what you had for breakfast or whether your child just did their first poo in a potty on Facebook. They’re just being polite.

So when I heard about a massive Catholic youth event celebrating faith and the Olympics at Wembley Arena this weekend, it was hardly surprising (although a shame) that I had difficulty finding news about it on Google. Turns out Sebastian Coe gave a video address to nearly 10,000 teenagers about sport and the commitment of the Olympic values: friendship, respect and excellence. He joked that this was the only time in his life that he’d be asked to be the Pope’s warm up act.

It sounded like a highly successful day with Jason Gardener (not the Dancing On Ice judge – the Olympic sprinter) addressing the crowd, along with Stef Reid, pin up girl of the Paralympics, a speed skating nun and other Olympic and Paralympic medal winners.

I have to say, I was taken by the idea of so many young people listening and reflecting quietly on the meaning of the Olympics, the links between sport and faith and what it is to be self-motivated in 2012. And given that so much attention is focused on the logistics of London 2012 at the moment, it was a great reminder that actually, the Olympics are about much more than just Big Macs and lycra.

See more on Twitter #flame2012

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