“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” (Hebrews 12:1-2)
In 2016 we received a grant from the Lilly Endowment’s Youth Theology Network (YTN) to launch the Faith and Sport Institute: Running the Race Well at Baylor University. The YTN believes that young Christians want to be challenged to think deeply about questions of ultimate meaning—in short, to think theologically. But they need spaces designed to help them cultivate that desire. The Faith and Sport Institute (FSI) takes that idea and focuses on the context of high school sports, helping young people connect their identities as athletes with their Christian faith.
Our program involves an intensive week-long summer retreat for high school athletes along with a year-long mentoring relationship. Young athletes learn to ask the big life questions, deepen integrity and spiritual leadership, and develop convictions and character to equip them for the “race of life.” We focus especially on cultivating five virtues, or theological principles, through sports: faith, love, discipline, hope, and courage. We help students see that these theological principles are for all of life—including the heat of competition.
On this website, “Running The Race Well” is our blog channel devoted to the FSI Retreat. The posts are written with an audience of high school athletes, their coaches, and their parents in mind. The content focuses especially on the concerns and issues that young athletes face, as well as the five virtues that we seek to cultivate through the FSI Retreat.
If you’d like to learn more about our retreat, you can visit the FSI website or check out a video of the FSI experience. In the meantime, follow us on Facebook or Twitter to stay up to date on our latest posts!