Charlotte Independence Update
During my recent 10-day trip, Charlotte, NC and spending some time with our chaplain to the Charlotte Independence was high on my priority list. Last year, Gustavo Bentos took over the chaplaincy while we were still operating under our former name. With some personal and professional challenges arising, it was difficult for Gustavo to really invest the time into the team during the latter part of 2017.
At a meal with Independence representatives, part of my own and Gustavo’s understanding was focused on how we might serve the team better this year. A transition to a new stadium venue in Matthews, NC and the moving of office space along with a new ownership represented changes on the Independence side that might give opportunities for Gustavo and the chaplaincy to occur.
As we attended the opening home game for the Independence, there were several points of ministry that were observable and that many people do not consider being part of what a chaplain might possibly do. For example, a player was taken to the hospital due to injury. I shared with Gustavo, that a chaplain might be the one to help that player in a number of ways. One way might include praying for the player before heading to the hospital or showing family members how to get to the hospital, or even to simply help the player retrieve his car or belongings later, from the stadium.
The game itself, was a thrilling, 4-1 win for the Independence. Included was this penalty kick goal:
Please pray for our work and the ongoing development of the chaplaincy in Charlotte with the Charlotte Independence. We are excited to see a fresh year and new season begin with Chaplain Gustavo Bentos in place and with several strong connections of people to serve.