Posted on 4 Comments

You are needed in youth sports

The attack occurred Friday night at Holy Name School in Springfield, Mass., according to local TV station WWLP. After his son’s team lost in the Catholic Youth Organization finals, Timothy Lee Forbes punched the winning coach, then bit off part of his ear, said Hampden assistant district attorney Marie Angers. Several of the 10-12 year old kids, who had gathered on the court to shake hands, were knocked to the floor and left crying after the incident.


You might have to read that twice.

  • Two teams make it to the championship game.
  • The winning team’s coach gets punched (allegedly) by the parent on the losing team.
  • The parent then proceeds to bite off part of the coaches ear. (Again, allegedly.)
  • Several of the kids were knocked to the down in the scuffle.

OK, now maybe you are confused by the title of my post. Why in the world should I get involved in youth sports? A guys ear was bitten off!

Actually, the two stories are only related by the idea that youth workers should get involved in youth sports. Whether its helping to coach your kids soccer team or stepping in as the head basketball coach at the high school. Youth ministry shouldn’t be bound purely to the activities we do through our ministry in an official capacity.

One easy way to get involved in nearly any community is to volunteer in youth sports. Some of my best youth ministry moments have occurred on the golf course as a volunteer coach. A few years ago I was walking up the fairway of the 7th hole at a local course with 3 sophomores. One guy said, “So Adam, when you pray do you like have to close your eyes or what? And do you really think God hears our prayers?

Moments like that aren’t all that rare. But they never would have happened if I hadn’t figured out a way to get involved in youth sports.

Just watch your ears.

Posted on 4 Comments

4 thoughts on “You are needed in youth sports

  1. Adam i echo this.  Some of my finest moments came from coaching 5 years of high school football & now the last 4 years of coaching my own kids & friends.  In the community & on “neutral ground” students & parents have been way more free to ask questions on life, religion, marriage, parenting, tithing & my all time favorite pornography.  No joke had a 10th grader ask me my view of porn after a practice in the locker room & had a captive audience of 50 high school football players & 3 coaches.  Could care less about the 40 snickers i got after my 4 minute rant but the 10 students who showed up at youth group THAT WEEK & 2 of them came to know Jesus AND I STILL KNOW THEM & WE TALK ABOUT THIS INCIDENT.

  2. If I only I played any type of sports . . . any recommendations for the completely non-athletic???

    1. The secret of coaching is that you don’t have to be athletic. You just have to love kids and be there. Without knowing ANYTHING about a sport, you can effectively be a volunteer assistant coach. Even at the high school level!

  3. Shocked by the title, saddened by the story. Youth pastors being involved in, or at least present at, student events reminds them that there is no sacred/secular divide. Everything we do is sacred and matters. But no matter how many times you preach this, the ball field becomes secular when emotion and adrenaline enter the picture. Our presence brings accountability, our involvement brings teachable moments. Great thoughts Adam!

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