Sunday, May 26, 2019

Picture This: My Spirituality VI

The words of Richard Rohr, OFM serve as a foundation for understanding a Theology of Sport. He writes: Spirituality is about seeing. It's not about earning or achieving. It's about relationship rather than results or requirements. Once you see, the rest follows. My goal—as a teacher and as a coach—is to train eyes to see. 

A course like Sports and Spirituality aims to do what Ignatius of Loyola instructed the early Jesuits to do—to go out and "find God in all things." If by the end of the semester (or season) my students and athletes can say "in all things, I have found God" my work is done. However, it's not as easy as it sounds. Therefore, we start small. We begin with the familiar. We embrace what is personal. We behold what we are passionate about. We look and listen, practice and probe and by the conclusion of our time together, we have more insight. What you see below reflects what they have found. 

This is the sixth installment of this posting, and my final rendition of doing so from the students of St. Ignatius College Prep. Staring in August, I will be teaching and coaching at St. Francis High School in Mountain View. Founded by the Brothers of the Holy Cross, my future students do not speak Ignatian. However, as someone who loves words and language, I can assure you and them, together will be learning a new language and acquiring a new vision. I look forward to sharing how I will "faith train" in a new way, come August! In the meantime, here is the work of my seniors—a wonderful group of Wildcats. 
“The experience you are having cannot be reductively explained by the effect of a ball going through a hoop. No, something else, something beyond the material—dare I say, something transcendent—is at play.” —Vincent Strand, SJ
“Sport expresses the unity and harmony of the Creator, but it also expresses
the diversity of life experience through winning and losing.”   - Martin Siegel
“No… I have, of course, prayed about the athletic meetings, asking that in this, too,
God might be glorified.” -Eric Liddell
"God is not remote from us. He is at the point of my pen, my pick, my paintbrush,
my needle — and my heart and my thoughts." —Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ
A lot of my spiritual life has to do with baseball. I often find myself praying for things related to me and succeeding with baseball. However, I make sure I always pray for something else in the world besides myself before I pray for myself. I was told this at a very a young age and it stuck with me. Baseball is the most lifelike sport because you are constantly failing. Before every game when I take the outfield I say a prayer for everyone’s safety and a fair game in which my team wins. After that I draw a CR9 which is a past coach who passed way two years ago. The baseball field has meant so much more to me now and I use it as a way to center my spirituality and competitiveness.
“the literal meaning of the word “competition.” It comes from the Latin competitionem, which
surprisingly means to strive with someone else” —Daniel A. Dombrowski
No caption required.
"I had no experience as a coach, but I knew how to be kind." —Coach Frank Allocco

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