WINNING IN GOOD COMPETITIONS
Fr. IRENEUSZ SKUBIŚ
The idea of sport as an effort, based on a competition among competitors of different sport disciplines, has its place, among the others, on the pages of the New Testament. St. Paul says about his fight for the first place in competitions (see 2 Tm 4,6-8). Aspiration for the first and the best place has a full justification in the Christian theology and the theology of spirituality. The Christian ascetic theology also says here about working on oneself, about the effort of people who undertake various ascetic practices, undertake the human struggle with themselves, in order to reach a better physical or spiritual condition. Therefore sport in the Christian character is a beautiful idea of work on one’s development. Competitors must struggle with themselves and must resign from many things in order to attempt to gain an intended effect. So, the work of a sportsman on himself is beautiful, fruitful and useful, therefore, the Holy Father himself sent a letter on the Euro 2012 with wishes ‘that the competitions would be experienced as an expression of the noblest aspirations and human actions, in the spirit of peace and honest joy’ and a prayer ‘in the intention of competitors, sport fans and organizers of the championships’. Hence there is an ecumenical prayer before competitions - for God’s grace for a beautiful game of all sport teams and that it would be a peaceful time. The whole educational idea in the Church is also based on being demanding to oneself. It is care about being responsible and fair towards another man and about maintaining the righteous conscience. Jesus said: ‘the blessed of pure heart, as they will see God’ (Mt 5.8)
When we look at the idea of liberalism, we notice that it is going rather in a direction of defeating a man. If he is weak, through the so-called moral freedom, he will only deepen his defects. We see how some liberals, including politicians, want to teach children and youth the behaviour which is not harmonious with nature, because they favour the rule that the man is supposed to place only himself in the centre of his life. Unfortunately, it is disastrous for both this young man and the community in which he lives. If condoms are given out to young people in order to teach the so-called safe sex, then the so-called water is made from their brains – because young people are taught the inhuman attitude to another man and much harm is being done to them. There is only a question why media, why clever journalists do not unmask such philosophies or not inquire into the truth. At the time of the championships, the weekly ‘Sunday’ has published a special calendar of a sport fan, including marked dates and places of matches. It will help us plan the time so that we could devote ourselves to the exciting competitions.
However, it seems that today the physical development of children and youth is not the best one. None vigour of the youth lies behind the increasing the number of PE hours, although we all know this saying: ‘In a healthy body there is a healthy spirit’. Sport mustn’t be belittled; especially today, at the age of people’s real clinging to the armchair in front of TV, computer, in a car.
Looking at the championship struggles in football, we notice that journalists were overwhelmed by real sport craziness. A lot of attention is given to details concerning sports and sport fans, not noticing ordinary life, increasing unemployment, problems in health care and growing prices in shops. We say about milliards of zlotys spent on stadiums, decorations, preparations and at the same time we do not notice the homeless, remaining practically without the perspectives for a better life, without a possibility for development; we close down about 2500 schools; over 2.4 million of Poles have gone abroad although their place should be among their relatives, in Poland. Surely, for this reason the authorities do not give permission for the place of the Television ‘Trwam’ in the digital multiplex, because too many of them would find out about the truth.
I also noticed that in the main TV and radio news only the matters connected with Euro 2012 are being reported, however, the VII World Family Congress in Milan with the participation of the Pope was not reported and the Corpus Christi procession, being a very important national event and which should strongly exist in the consciousness of Poles, has been treated marginally. Why is it happening so? How to explain it?
Sport is very important – for each of us, also for the Catholics. The Church respects sport, knows what its place is in the human life; but no present sport competitions can blind us from care about the littlest ones, the poorest, about whom everybody is still forgetting; for Jesus Christ is in them. Who is helping the littlest one he is helping the very Christ.