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Pope sends video message to World Cup opening

June 12, 2014

In a video message for the opening of the FIFA World Cup competition in Brazil, Pope Francis highlighted three ways in which athletics can contribute to a culture of peace.

Pope Francis noted that training, which requires sacrifice, is necessary for athletic victories. Sports thus become a “metaphor for our lives” on the importance of training in virtue, which builds character.

Soccer, he added, highlights the importance of overcoming individualism and selfishness for the sake of the team, as well as the importance of respecting others, whether teammates or opponents. “No to segregation, no to racism!” the Pope implored, before pledging to pray for those involved in the World Cup.


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