Assis – SP, Brazil- August 2015
Since May the boys of the Open Arms Futebol Club of Assis have been competing in the Regional U11, U13, and U15 Youth Championships. I should point out that this championship boasts the participation of the all-star teams from all of the cities in the region and is hotly contested. On the other hand, all of Open Arms’ teams are from a handful of poor neighborhoods in the city of Assis and have their primary focus in the area of spiritual formation and discipleship within the context of the sport of soccer. Our goal isn’t to make great soccer players, but good and godly young men.
However, with character and humility often comes success. All three of our teams made the semi-finals in early August. The U11 and U13 teams lost close semi-final matches while our U15 team won their semi-final match 2-0 and advanced to the final where they took the title 2-1!
That’s great news of course, but here is a real win. Agent of Hope and Head Coach, Jose Carlos “Neto” made a home visit to one of the boys who trains with Open Arms and spoke with his father, an ex-drug trafficker. This father questioned Neto about the change he had seen in his son since he began training and playing with Open Arms as well as attending an Open Arms bible study. He was baffled by his son’s new found discipline and respect at home. Neto was able to give God the glory for a changed life and hopefully plant a seed that will turn this father to Jesus as well.
We give thanks to God for our generous donors without whom we would not be able to maintain people like Neto in the lives of kids who are in dire need of hope. Thank you for partnering with us in bringing that hope to so many children! Congratulations boys!