|The Stanley Cup|
Living as I do in the Tampa Bay area I follow the local teams, not with quite as much enthusiasm as I do for my Boston teams. Last night I watched with great joy as the Tampa Bay Lightning captured the Stanley Cup as champions of the hockey world.
Given that this blog usually reflects on issue of religion or life in our world and its various cultures you might wonder why am I writing about sports. Good question. I certainly admit that scoring goals, touchdowns or baskets or hitting home runs is not the most important thing in the world. I also lament the huge salaries of players and the large sums of money involved in sports. Having said all that I believe that there is an important lesson that our nation, the Church and the world in general can learn from sports, especially from those who win championships.
Let's just take our hockey champions as an example. Their season was stopped in March with the Covid-19 outbreak. They resumed play at the end of July with playoffs that would lead to a championship over a two month period. Because of the pandemic they stayed in what is popularly called a bubble staying only in two different cities, away from family and friends for most of this time. The players come from different countries, speak different languages, though all seem to speak English. They worked together as a team and did not let differences of culture, politics or personality keep them from focusing on the big goal--winning the championship.
That is what we call all learn from any sports championship--unity of purpose. Our country and even our churches oar so terribly divided. It's not bad to have differences of opinion but the hatred and vitriol, even in the Church which is supposed to be following One whose basic commandment is love is deeply concerning.
So let us rejoice and celebrate when our favorite team wins but more importantly let us learn from them the importance of working together.