Introducing Soccer Chaplains United

Sep 09, 2017

Welcome to Soccer Chaplains United! We are glad that you’ve found our new website and we are excited with moving forward.

In 2002, when I first began to work as a chaplain with the Colorado Rapids, I was looking for a framework, a phrase for doing ministry. Cross-training, at the time, was an emerging philosophy of exercise where the whole of a person was considered. The idea was that an athlete needed to cross-train in order to be a better all-around athlete. Taking that idea further — I felt that those in sport needed to cross-train, but in emotional and spiritual areas. And so, CrossTraining was born.

But in more recent times, with the emergence of the crossfit  exercise movement, we’ve seen a lot of people confused about who our chaplains and counselors are. In addition, we’ve also seen our relationships and service to soccer become increasingly stronger over the years. So, last year, we began asking, “Who are we, and how should we identify ourselves?”

Well, we’ve finally landed — Soccer Chaplains United!

Soccer Chaplains United is a group of chaplains and counselors united by a common code and a shared vision to provide spiritual care, wise counsel, and meaningful service in soccer.

Our chaplains are the entry point into serving a soccer team or organization — we don’t just serve elite athletes — we make ourselves available to everyone in an organization and the alumni as well. Appropriate spiritual care means that we serve people of all faiths (or no faith) by looking to provide holistic care whenever and however possible. For people of a different faith tradition, we refer and resource them so that they can feel appropriately supported.

Our counselors are the next means of how we serve an organization. We realize that even a chaplain, operating in an ecumenical and interfaith fashion may still encounter resistance or barriers because of how religion has affected people. Even for those that are receptive to chaplain services, there are some skill sets and training that counselors have to help provide the wise counsel and mental health that someone in the soccer world needs. Our counselors work off referrals from chaplains and hold strict confidentiality with the clients they serve.

Finally, we realize that in the world of soccer, that there is a continual need to give to communities that have little. Through our community initiatives, Soccer Chaplains United link faith and soccer communities together. Soccer, known as the world’s sport, knows little barriers in terms of language or culture. When soccer teams look to change equipment or gear, we help facilitate faith and non-profit groups in using it to enhance their mission and work in local and global communities that are less fortunate and resourced.

We hope that you will join and partner with us in our work and mission.

– Director, Rev. Brad Kenney

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