English Paper

Submitted By Paccer-Sexton
Words: 1245
Pages: 5

Pregame Prayer in Today’s Youth

The smell of fresh cut green grass. Dirt from the infield spread evenly over the diamond shaped field from first base across to third base. The freshly cooked scent of goodies from the food stand, getting ready for the start of the game that is about to start. On the outfield grass in the distance, there are about six baseball players from the home team who know they are about to get part of their uniform dirty and they all start to kneel down to one knee. With the rays of the sun glistening off of their white baseball jerseys and the bright shining glow of red from the numbers, which identifies each player of the team, the players kneel down, take off their ball caps, and lower their heads in unison. As the home team coach looks on from a distance at his players, a young child from the crowd tugs at his father's pant leg and asked, "What are they doing out there?" The child's father replies, "They are just praying, son." Praying has become more than a ritual, or maybe even a phase. For today's generation of young athletes pregame prayer can be more of a sporting tradition. Prayer and Faith among the young people can have a lasting impression, not only on the younger, but older generations as well. Praying during sporting events can create respect for one another, and bring a team to learn the aspects of a family by believing in something much more than the sport. Even though pregame prayer has been frowned upon in the public eye, the choices made by young people today can have a greater future of tomorrow. Youth prayer is becoming more of an everyday ritual for some, rather than just a phase that many young people may out grow by their adult years. By looking at the image from Gueorgui Pinkhassov, titled Pregame Prayer, the viewer can see the young athletes kneeling down, praying in a group setting assuming that they are believed to be praying for a safe and great game (McQuade 72). They look confident, focused, and undiscouraged about the things around them. A team from the University of Norte Dame did a study to figure out if youth of today actually pray, and how often do they pray (Religion). The study showed that over 80 percent of today's youth actually do pray on their own, and about 40 percent of that 80 percent do it on a daily basis. More studies have often shown that the older youth generations pregame prayer throughout their younger years was at a minimal, and they did not start doing it until their adult years (Religion). Seemingly feeling embarrassed, the older youth generation, now in their adult years, are now looking down upon the praying youth of today. Faith and prayer among young athletes has become a standard with high school sports. "Faith and determination can drive an athlete to better him or herself on the field” (). The faith that drives an athlete to become a better leader is one that the youth of today are striving for. The viewer can determine from the pregame photo that the coach is in the distance watching, therefore one of the players may have initiated the outfield pregame prayer. In an article by Roman Stubbs, a reporter for The Washington Post, who covers the University of Maryland athletics, titled “Faith and Football Collide on Area Public High School Fields," he wrote about a small town high school football team that has a long-standing tradition of praying before and after practice as well as before and after a game. Stubbs goes on to talk about how some of the leaders on the team stood up and carried out the tradition, and being from another religion, his faith and leadership is one that the younger players on the team developed a long impression of those leaders for time to come (Stubbs). The great Vince Lombardi once said that, "Leaders are made and not born." Even though being a great leader and standing up for what you believe in, specifically pregame prayer, can impact the impression for the rest of the team, it is the lasting