Pope Warns Olympic Leaders Over Commercialization Of Athletes

POPE Francis has met a large delegation of Olympic leaders, and used the occasion to issue a warning over the commercialization of athletes.

Francis told several hundred members of the European Olympic Committees that when sport “is considered only in economic terms and consequently for victory at every cost … it risks reducing athletes to mere trading material from whom profits are extracted.”

The pope added that “sport is harmony but if money and success prevail as the aim this harmony crumbles.”

Religion actually led to the banning of the Olympics for over 1500 years, In AD 393, the Christian emperor Theodosius banned the Games, along with other Greek and Roman festivals, for being too pagan, violent and gory. His successor, Theodosius II, went a step further in 426, ordering his army to demolish Olympia’s stadium.

It would be 1,500 years later before Baron Pierre de Coubertin would found the modern Olympics.

In his memoirs, de Coubertin wrote that sports were “a religion with its church, dogmas, service… but above all, a religious feeling.” Two years before his death, in a 1935 radio address, he asserted that “the first essential characteristic of ancient and of modern Olympism alike is that of being a religion.”

De Coubertin didn’t set out to create a new religion in the traditional sense. But he understood the power of religious rituals, symbols, rites and ceremonies, and incorporated them into the modern Olympic movement. He even included a hymn. In its original version, the first verse is a paean to the “immortal spirit of antiquity, father of the true, beautiful and good.”

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8 thoughts on “Pope Warns Olympic Leaders Over Commercialization Of Athletes

      • Remember Paul’s writing about love? Anything we do without true love is vanity. As for “if the interest is God-guided,” there is a great god in every one of us pretending and masquerading to be the true one, our mind. It will very convincingly tell us that something is god’s will regardless of consequences. Just look how many wars were fought in the name of god. Measure the will of god against love. Is that what I am going to do in accordance with unconditional love? How will it affect others, not just people, but everything on the planet. If you find that the effect is positive, do it. If not you been bamboozled by your own mind.

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      • Apostle Paul also says “I know that in me dwells no good thing” Rom. 7:18. Therefore there is no such thing as a god called love within us. Needless to say it is easy to assent to the truth that without love we are nothing (1 Cor 13:1,2) but even the author of the love chapter admitted that love is something that is not natural within us. It is of heavenly origin.

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      • Fossall, I agree. Whole-heartedly. I believe if we are totally absorbed in work such as Mother Theresa did, we are working with God. Love IS the criteria.

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