Christian view on rethinking Defeat – an Important Element of Sports

В категориях: Russian Christian News

William Yoder

News from Sochi on February 20, the 13th day of the Olympics


The thirteenth day of the Sochi Olympics lifted Russia to fourth place on the medals list. Unusual was the gold medal won for Russia by the US-born snowboarder Vic Wild, a recently-naturalized citizen of Russia. A press conference with the silver-medal winners Alexander Bessmertnih, Nikita Kryukov, Maxim Vylegzhanin and Dmitry Yaparov was held today in Sochi's main media center.

The largest Olympic torch relay ever, the enormous, new sport venues, the greatest number of medals ever awarded as well as new Olympic records have made the Sochi Games a memorable event. What organization stands behind this great sport event? All rights for the Olympic Games are held by the "International Olympic Committee" established in Paris in 1894 by Pierre de Coubertin. The Committee supervises both Summer and Winter Olympics. Its Organizing Committee is responsible for preparation of the Games. National Olympic committees always need IOC approval.

The Olympic movement unites millions of athletes irregardless of their political or religious preferences and race. The International Olympic Committee has approved 204 national Olympic committees. Raymond Bergmanis, the president of Latvia's Olympic committee and participant at three Olympics, described the specifics of their work. The work of the International Olympic Committees has resulted in spectacular events that inspire and encourage millions around the globe. Tom Bouzek, a hockey referee from the US and father of a member of its women's Olympic ice-hockey team, shared his impressions of the event. He affirmed that Sochi was a wonderful surprise with its well-planned Olympic park. He described everything as "nice and clean".

The Olympics give athletes an impression of what lofty moral values entail. At the Sochi event, Olympic champions have described that which is important beyond sports awards. High morality and a rethinking of defeat are elements especially vital to Russia's Olympic team, for it is suffering through a dry stretch at the moment.

A great many athletes attempt to believe in victory, in the future and (most importantly) in God. Faith characterizes many of these champions. Viktor Podluzhniy, Sports Director for the Christian "Athletes in Action" organization, spoke about this with journalists from the "International Christian Information Center". "The main philosophy of our service is to explain to athletes that medals and other awards were invented by people," he explained. "But their main support and coach is the Lord, who gives them talents and an opportunity to take part in the Olympic Games. And they already become champions at that moment when they exert all that they have. We Christians believe that God hears our hearts and can quickly supply us with the comfort and strength we need in order to attain new victories."

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