Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo


7/17/2009 (6 years ago)

Catholic News Agency (

It is an error to purge sports of those ethical values that the Christian faith and the Catholic Church have defended for centuries.

'Only a revolution from below that is capable of training wholesome athletes and individuals will be able to restore the authentic meaning to sports that is under threat from violence, drugs, racism and money.'

'Only a revolution from below that is capable of training wholesome athletes and individuals will be able to restore the authentic meaning to sports that is under threat from violence, drugs, racism and money.'



Catholic News Agency (

7/17/2009 (6 years ago)

Published in Europe

ROME (CNA)- The president of the John Paul II Foundation for Sports, Eddio Constantini, has severely criticized the president of the International Soccer Association Board (FIFA), Joseph Blatter, for seeking to prohibit religious speech during matches. Blatter's action came after the Brazilian team huddled for a prayer at the conclusion of the Confederations Cup.

Constantini explained that "Blatter and the soccer federation Denmark are mistaken, it is an error to purge sports of those ethical values that the Christian faith and the Catholic Church have defended for centuries."

His statements came in response to comments by the FIFA president about the Brazilian players huddling for prayer after their victory over the United States. He called their gesture "a danger" and said there was "no room for religion in soccer." Blatter has also promised he would prohibit any kind of religious expression during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

Constantini said the comments by Blatter were not new and pointed to his "ultimatum" to the Brazilian team for a similar gesture after the 2002 world championships. "I would argue that it is precisely the gradual abandoning of religious and ethical values that has been the cause of the moral degradation that is affecting soccer and sports in general," he added.

"Only a revolution from below that is capable of training wholesome athletes and individuals will be able to restore the authentic meaning to sports that is under threat from violence, drugs, racism and money," Constantini stated.

The John Paul II Foundation for Sports was launched in July of 2008. Among its objectives is the organization of a triennial program of national and international sporting events focused on promote human dignity, especially among young people.

On that occasion Constantini said it was not coincidental that the launching of the Foundation coincided with the opening of the Pauline Year. "In his letters St. Paul often refers to the Christian life as a sports race which at the end will be awarded with an imperishable crown."


Founded in continued response to Pope John Paul II’s call for a “New Evangelization,” the Catholic News Agency (CNA) has been, since 2004, one of the fastest growing Catholic news providers to the English speaking world.


More Europe

The unexpected thing one Syrian refugee did for Germany that will melt your heart Watch

Image of Syrian refugee Alex Assali fed the homeless outside Berlin's Alexanderplatz station in an effort to give back to the city that has helped him, and other refugees, so much (Imgur).


Amid fears of ISIS infiltration and Muslim takeovers, one Syrian refugee took a stand against prejudiced tensions and thanked the city of Berlin on behalf of all refugees. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Each Saturday, Alex Assali cooks and distributes food to ... continue reading

Concentration camps and Nazi language: Berlin guards caught on tape speaking unbelievably cruel about refugees Watch

Image of Berlin guards at the office for refugees have reportedly been recorded using Nazi language and suggesting refugees be sent to concentration camps (Markus Heine/ NurPhoto).


Videos have been released showing Berlin guards around the office for refugees using "Nazi language" and suggesting the refugees be sent to concentration camps. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Security guards working for private contractor Gegenbauer Security ... continue reading

SHOCK SHOW: Sacrilegious art exhibit in Spain uses 240 stolen consecrated hosts Watch

Image of Photos of the theft of the Hosts and their placement on the ground are shown in a public art gallery in Pamplona.

By Catholic News Agency

Critics of Pamplona's city council say it deliberately attacked Catholics and broke Spanish law by using city property to display a sacrilegious art exhibit with more than 240 stolen consecrated Hosts. Madrid, Spain (CNA) - The Spanish artist Abel Azcona stole ... continue reading

French Hostage Situation: Two armed suspects engage in shootout with French police Watch

Image of French police engaged in a shootout with two suspects armed with Kalashnikovs (Not pictured).


Two suspects armed with Kalashnikov rifles engaged in a shootout with French police in Toubaix, France. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The suspects are believed to have taken a bank director and his family hostage, but very little is currently known.[media ... continue reading

Vatican corruption: Journalists stand trial Watch

Image of Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi must stand trial at the Vatican for publishing confidential documents (Reuters).


Following the publication of books claiming the Holy See was mismanaged and spoiled through corruption, five people went on trial at the Vatican on Tuesday. Two of the five on trial were Italian Journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi, neither of whom ... continue reading

Undercover reporter reveals secret FEMALE ISIS organization in Britain Watch

Image of One veiled ISIS sympathizer was filmed during the undercover investigation (Channel 4).


In a new British documentary titled The British Women Supporters Unveiled, one young female reporter goes undercover to infiltrate a secret Muslim organization designed to garner sympathy for the Islamic State. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The reporter, who uses ... continue reading

OUTRAGEOUS: Find out why The Lord's Prayer was BANNED from Just Pray movie theater ad Watch

Image of


An advertisement featuring the Lord's Prayer has been banned from movie theaters in England. According to the Church of England, the policy that prevents the prayer advertisement did not exist when they began production on the commercial. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading

Swiss farmer finds 4,000 extremely rare Roman coins in his orchard Watch

Image of The cache of coins is estimated to be more than 1,700 years old.


A Swiss farmer was tilling his orchard in Ueken, in the northern canton of Aargau, Switzerland, when he spotted something shiny on the ground. He had inadvertently stumbled across a treasure trove of Roman-era coins - 4,166 in all, some dating as back as 274 ... continue reading

Five people indicted by Vatican in 'Vati-leaks' scandal Watch

Image of Journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi (pictured), had both recently published books, citing specific Vatican documents detailing waste, mismanagement, and greed.


A judge, rendering a decision in a scandal involving Vatican finances has indicted five people, which include two journalists and a Vatican monsignor. Information linking the Vatican to financial malfeasance, as well as related graft and corruption called ... continue reading

Massacre in France is a Piecemeal Third World War, and Jesus is the Path to Peace Watch

Image of With tenderness, Jesus looked out from the Mount of Olives and saw the Holy City of Jerusalem. How he loved - and still loves - that special City. Then, Jesus wept. The Word Incarnate, made a man like us in all things but sin, cried. He knew that the City of Jerusalem would soon be overtaken and destroyed by the armies of Titus. He wept the tears of Love - and revealed the compassion of His Sacred Heart

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Do we recognize the time of our own visitation? God is present in our world today. He wants to  speak, to lead, to serve, to heal and to save. He is not to blame for the mess we are in. We are!  Those who purport to be representing their "God"  as ... continue reading

All Europe News


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • BIGGER THAN ISIS - There's a hidden power behind ISIS and it's so big ...
  • The Miracle Prayer HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Saturday, November 28, 2015
  • St. Catherine Laboure: Saint of the Day for Saturday, November 28, 2015
  • Prayer For Courage HD Video
  • President likens Syrian refugees to pilgrims on Mayflower in ...
  • 'Black Friday' leaving bruises as shoppers trample each other for ...

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Daniel 7:15-27
15 'I, Daniel, was deeply disturbed and the visions that passed through ... Read More

Psalm, Daniel 3:82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87
82 Bless the Lord, all the human race: praise and glorify him for ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:34-36
34 'Watch yourselves, or your hearts will be coarsened by debauchery and ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 28th, 2015 Image

St. Catherine Laboure
November 28: St. Catherine Laboure, virgin, was born on May 2, ... Read More