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2018/2022 World Cup December 2, 2010

Posted by daniel ayad in Contemporary issues.

On December 2nd 2010, the fifa world cup hosts for 2018 and 2022 will be decided. I still maintain high interest in this sport, and watched part of the American bid presentation. Famous actor Morgan Freeman is part of the American bid, and here is his transcript:  

Bring It To My Country.

When I first joined the USA Bid Committee and narrated the film you just saw, I did so because of some beliefs I hold very dear.

I believe in the ideals of my country, and in the promise it has always held for people from every corner of the globe.

From the very beginning, people have been coming to the United States because ours is a nation founded on tolerance, on freedom of thought and expression and religion. And still people come, for we are a country rooted in hope and possibility and hard work — a country of dreams, and the right to pursue them.

We have sometimes struggled to be true to our ideals, but as we rise to meet our challenges, we come together as a people. We are now the most diverse nation on Earth, and our patchwork heritage is our greatest strength—lots of Americans, one America.

I also believe that sport, as Nelson Mandela says, “has the power to change the world.”

I’ve never seen the potential for this more strongly, more clearly, than in America’s growing passion for the beautiful game. I’ve witnessed the remarkable power of football at home, and I’ve had the honor of witnessing it at this summer’s World Cup in South Africa. 

If you haven’t lived in the United States, you haven’t seen just how wide and deep Americans’ love of football really is. You would be surprised, maybe even shocked.

You would also see just how perfectly football’s values mirror the values of our nation:

You would see that in a country that admires individual achievement, we truly cherish what can be done when we come together as a group.

You would see that in a country founded on the belief that we are all created equal, we love the fact that on the pitch there is no difference whatsoever between a doctor and a cab driver, a carpenter… and an actor.

The world of the World Cup is the world we want to live in. To us, the FIFA World Cup — 32 nations coming together to live by 17 rules, with the rest of the planet cheering alongside them — is in many ways a vision of paradise on earth.

The prospect of hosting the event for one transcendent month is for us an exhilarating, humbling opportunity to use the power of the game to indeed change the world.

Never has my country been more committed to bringing an event to our shores. From our fans to our media to our government, we are ready to embrace the world.

And there is no stronger, more resolute supporter of our bid than the man whom you are about to hear from.  As he expressed to you President Blatter at the earliest stages of our bid, he discovered the unifying power of the sport as a young boy playing football on the streets of Jakarta, and its lessons have carried him on to the present, where he continues to marvel at the spirit of football, of the unity of it, from the touch lines of his daughters’ games. 

Bring It To My Country…

Interesting presentation…..

Freeman mentions on more than one occasion that sport can indeed change the world. I would certainly agree with this view. Sport does bring people together, and can be a great unifying team experience.  He says You would see that in a country founded on the belief that we are all created equal, we love the fact that on the pitch there is no difference whatsoever between a doctor and a cab driver, a carpenter… and an actor”.

To me, this perception of equality draws a parallel to “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Gal 3:29)

If sport has the power to change the world, imagine the power Christianity has. If a sporting event that runs for one month changes people, imagine the power Christianity has to transform people forever. Christ is far bigger than any world cup.    

Any positive ideals promoted at the world cup are originally founded at the feet of Jesus Christ. Every positive ideal begins with Him. Perhaps events like the world cup do injustice to the creator of all positive ideals. I mean it’s rather easy for world cup bidding members to forget Christ’s teachings and ideals, and proclaim them as their own.

I wonder exactly how the world cup is used to change the world. In the ever increasing immoral, atheistic society we now live in, events like the world cup need to put the focus back on God. Christ is more effective in creating unity, positive behaviour and love between people. A spherical ball, no matter how enjoyable to play with, does not transform the inner person. We need Christ more than ever, and we need Him back at the world cup.



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