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Faith and Futbol: United Methodists score big with kids

Aldersgate United Methodist Church started a youth soccer program in 2017 to teach children how playing soccer helps build faith.

Transcript

Pastor Juan Julio Paredes: This area used to be full of trees, snakes and glass. But with the help of the moms, we cleaned this soccer field and turned it into a sanctuary. 

We started this soccer ministry here at the Aldersgate UMC in 2017. 

Hispanics, here in the United States, like soccer. So, if we bring them to church,  where we have a good field and have a devotional and read the Bible, we will grow in faith and in the sport.

David Herrera: We focus on teaching children the basics of soccer, but what really care about is their heart, their soul, their relationship with God. The kids are learning essential values on the soccer field. Such as loving your neighbor, letting go of anger, like we read in Proverbs. So, we try to back up those values and disciplines with the Word of God and teach them to the kids so they can leave this place and apply them to their lives. 

Soccer is, in our culture, everything. It's a sport that unites us and it is a priority.

Maria Louo: The program is very important for my family because it helps the kids be better. We help by coming to support our kids with the jerseys. We wash the uniforms, we bring watermelon, cut it up and hand it out. we help clean and take out the trash.  

Baudillo Luengas: I have seen a great difference in the kids from when they were 3, 4, 5 years old. Now they are 8, 10, 12 years old. It's a huge development, a huge growth. they are other people now. They are becoming men. 

Pastor Juan Julio: I see the church's commitment to the Hispanic group...because we know the kids are growing in their faith. and one day, they will go to university and the United States will grow more and be stronger with these kids. 

This video was produced by United Methodist Communications in Nashville, Tennessee. The contact is Joe Iovino .

This video was published on September 21, 2022.