16 July 2012
Free Bibles in Olympic village
Athletes taking part in the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games will have access to free copies of the Bible and scripture portions, thanks to the Bible Society.
Available as a welcome gift in the Olympic Village Religious Services Centre will be around 3,000 copies of commemorative English-language Scriptures. There will also be nearly 1,000 copies of Bibles and New Testaments available in a variety of other languages through partnerships with national Bible Societies around the globe.
The Bibles provided in English will be The Sports Good News Bible and The Sports Good News Gospel of Luke. Both contain specially commissioned articles written to help sportspeople consider the relationships between sport and faith.
David Willson, CEO of More Than Gold, said: "At past Olympics and other major sports events I've seen athletes deeply grateful for the free gift of a Bible. Bible Society are to be highly commended for their support in making such gifts possible."
In order to meet the anticipated demand, Bible Society has launched a special appeal as part of its Bible: Body & Soul initiative for 2012. Those wishing to give in support of this initiative should go to their website.
Matthew van Duyvenbode, head of advocacy at Bible Society, said: "The Bible offers words of deep consolation, inspiration and challenge, themes which resonate with athletes from around the world. Having the opportunity to offer the scriptures in a format accessible for sports people is a strong statement that the Bible belongs at the heart of every aspect of life."
Bible Society group chief Executive James Catford added: "The achievements we gain on the outside are driven by the people we are on the inside – that's what we discover in the story of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus written by Luke and found within the Christian Scriptures."