Many things unite people. Family, faith and football are just three.
Our genes unite us to our biological families and while for many that’s a happy experience for others it’s quite the opposite.
A shared faith can unite people from different cultures, background and experiences. The Christian church is often called a family with members looking out for one another and supporting each other.
Football unites people too. Sadly that can mean uniting a minority of fans who are bent on violence, as we have seen recently in France during Euro 2016, but far more often football unites people for good. Back in May Manchester United fan, Moses Kamara travelled 7000 kilometres from Sierra Leone to watch his beloved team play their final Premier League game of the season against Bournemouth. But when he arrived the match was called off following a security scare at Old Trafford. Moses cried but his tears soon turned to tears of joy as friends from the Manchester United Supporters Trust came to the rescue. They not only helped Moses get a ticket for the rearranged match, they also got him a ticket for the FA Cup final against Crystal Palace and rearranged his flight home. Ian Sterling, Vice-chairman of MUST said: “When we heard the game was abandoned we had to tell Moses and the poor lad was distraught. That was his dream. But we’re trying to do the right thing for a friend.” United by name, united by nature.
Our weekly radio programme Planet Sport Football Africa unites fans of African football around the world. Most of our listeners live in Africa but we’ve heard from fans in Korea, Italy and the United States. The show is heard on 40 stations in 14 countries, online and via our phone app. This week alone we have had over 100 responses through Whats App and social media from fans in Cameroon, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Namibia, Malawi, The Gambia, Scotland and Libya.
Our listeners are united by a love of football. The Passion for Sport team is united by both a passion for sport and a passion for Jesus. Our aim is to introduce sports fans to Jesus and Planet Sport Football Africa provides us with a great opportunity.
You can show your support for Planet Sport Football Africa by praying that God will use the programme to build his Kingdom and by making a gift here.
By Adrian Barnard