Dr. Benjamin Houltberg participated in the three-hour seminar “Sport, Psychology and Christianity” as a delegate at the inaugural Global Congress on Sports and Christianity, August 24-28, 2016, held at York St John University, UK. Erik Dailey—a PhD candidate in Theology & Culture—also presented data for our Team World Vision Study and participated in a strand for fitness. Erik worked on this project last year with Drs. Houltberg and Schnitker and teaches on the subject of theology of sport and fitness. Fuller Seminary was well represented at the congress, as Dr. Robert Johnston was also a speaker at the event and Catherine Barsotti attended. The conference included a service for the delegates at the Minster Cathedral in York. “It was beautiful,” Ben says.
About the Inaugural Global Congress on Sports and Christianity (IGCSC)
In light of the dramatic increase in academic research activity and practical initiatives on the topic of sports and Christianity over the last decade, the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at York St John University, in collaboration with the Bible Society, will host this event.
The aims of the IGCSC
- Encourage global collaboration between academics, practitioners, politicians, clergy, administrators and athletes
- Produce quality academic and practitioner publications that have societal impact
- Through intentional mentoring and collaboration, develop individuals in their sphere of influence
- Affect a “culture shift” in modern sport through the sharing of ideas and practices and a coming together of individuals from across the academic disciplines and all streams and denominations of Christianity, culminating in an inclusive and ecumenical event
The IGCSC will be held over four-and-a-half-days and will comprise a gala dinner, keynote lectures, parallel sessions, a panel discussion led by the Bible Society, a three-hour seminar for each of the fourteen thematic strands, a student forum, and a networking event, in which representatives from practitioner organizations, research centers, and publishers will be able to share information. A sport-themed service will also be held in York Minster, one of Europe’s finest cathedrals, which will include an interview with former English premiership footballer Linvoy Primus MBE and ex-paralympian Anne-Waflua Strike MBE.
To ensure the continued development and long-term sustainability of the field, an international organizing committee has been established to devise and operationalize a long-term strategic plan to ensure similar events take place every three years (in appropriate institutions around the world). The importance and timeliness of the IGCSC, 2016, has been endorsed by a wide variety of individuals.