10 September 2021
"Everything is connected": sport and ecology for a meeting with God
The Head of the Church and Sport Office to "Tout est lié", the CEF’s online magazine, on the occasion of the "Season of Creation 2021".
Last August, the French Bishops' Conference (CEF) magazine Tout est lié published an interview to Santiago Pérez de Camino, Head of the Dicastery's Church and Sport Office.
In the interview, Pérez de Camino explored the close relationship between sports, nature and Creation and how sports contribute to fostering not only the physical and mental balance of those who practice them, but also of the environment around them. Furthermore, sports prove to be a unique tool for transmitting faith and Christian values, on occasions when the beauty of the surrounding environment invites us to an encounter with God.
"In Laudato Si', Pope Francis affirms that ecology is not exclusively an environmental issue related to the conservation of Creation, but it is essentially an anthropological and cultural issue. In this sense, practicing sports is rooted in this integral ecology as an element that gives balance to all Creation. In the early days of sports, they made the difference between work and leisure and were also considered as a means for educating younger generations. In today's pandemic situation, the need to reclaim leisure time becomes apparent. Today, we are dealing with an overlapping of space and time in our lives, due to the 'con-fusion' of work and leisure. Sports can assist in bringing order to this combination, helping to create moments to regenerate, bursting with physical closeness, socialization, fun, 'unproductivity', gratuitousness and meaning. We are experiencing a profound crisis in the world of sports. More than ever, it is necessary to promote sport as a tool to reclaim the commemorative meaning of rest, of free time, fun (in the etymological sense of recreation) and play. With all due respect for the environmental aspect and the value that nature and Creation have in the practice of some sports, whether it be at an amateur or professional level, the true challenge for rooting sports in integral ecology lies in this".
To read the complete interview in Spanish or French, click below.