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Securing a Sustainable and Peaceful Future for All: The Contribution of Sport


The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP), which takes place annually on 6 April, presents an opportunity to recognize the positive role sport and physical activity play in communities and in people’s lives across the globe.

Sport has the power to change the world; it is a fundamental right and a powerful tool to strengthen social ties and promote sustainable development and peace, as well as solidarity and respect for all.

In recognition of sport’s broad influence, the global theme of IDSDP 2022 is, “Securing a Sustainable and Peaceful Future for All: The Contribution of Sport,” which creates an opportunity for the Day’s celebrations to promote the use of sport as a tool to advance human rights and sustainable development. Under this theme, UN Headquarters in New York will recognize the role of sport in addressing the climate crisis and will highlight actions to lower greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate against climate change.

Sport is in a unique position to display leadership, to take responsibility for its carbon footprint, engage in a climate neutral journey, incentivize action beyond the sporting sector, and play a major role in amplifying awareness among its billions of spectators, facilitators and participants at all levels. With the need for urgent action growing more dire every day, the relationship between sport and climate must be better understood and ways of developing policies and taking concrete action to help reverse the impact of climate change through sport must be communicated to as wide an audience as possible.

Today, our world faces generational challenges, from poverty and hunger, to climate change to the COVID-19 pandemic. More than ever, we need to overcome our differences and unite as one team working together to tackle these obstacles and create a safer, more peaceful, and more sustainable future for all.


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A Crown for Australia: Striving for the Best in Our Sporting Nation

Today is a great day to revisit the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Social Justice Statement 2014–2015. It challenges us to look at the place of sport in our lives. Where are its strengths and how can we ensure that sport can thrive and in return can nourish our society? Equally, what are the influences that are undermining and distorting sport’s ideals? Most importantly, how can we work to realise sport’s potential to unite communities, overcome differences and be a force for social justice and reconciliation?

Prayer for Good Sports

God of all sports (and none);
from our small minds,
how amused you must be
when our prayers about sport
are about our own success or our team's.
Whose side are you on?
How do you choose
when supporters from both sides
implore your divine intervention?

Remind us that in prayer
our hearts are opened to you
and our minds lifted beyond ourselves.
Just as prayer changes us,
not you, O God,
so sport too, can lift us beyond ourselves.
So we pray:

We give thanks for the gift of our bodies,
for the ability to run, walk, jump,
swim, catch and throw.
We pray for patience and discipline,
that we may learn the joy of mastering new skills:
achieving success, and cheerfully bearing failure
in the company of others.

We pray that our relationships be enriched
through the friendships we form.
May we learn to include others across borders
of language, colour, gender and religion.

We pray that we care for others.
May we especially look out for those
who are differently abled,
and those often left on the boundaries.

Through our vigilance
may we always play fair,
and ensure that no one is abused or exploited.

We ask this through Jesus your son. Amen.