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Faith and Fitness

by Michael Ford last modified 22 Jan, 2019 10:53 AM

The work of a pioneering Sports Ministry Coach, who has been inspiring pupils in the Diocese is being featured on BBC Songs of Praise.

Chris Andrew from Project Touchline, who has been working with St Bartholomew Primary Academy, Royal Wootton Bassett and part of the Diocese of Salisbury Academy Trust will appear on the ‘Faith and Fitness’ programme.

Chris is a professional sports coach and a Licensed Lay Minister with the Diocese of Gloucester. He has been invited to coach rugby at the schools, and he uses various Bible stories in his work. In addition, during the school holidays, the Vicar and PCC of the Benefice of Shaw and Atworth have been working with Chris to deliver four days of multi-sports at Shaw C of E Primary School, with a regular attendance of 50 children.

Chris said:
“This week it is Luke chapter 11 verses 5-13, 'The Persistent Friend'. Students were encouraged to ask, seek and knock before, during and after rugby training and beyond. PE lessons started with reflection and prayer on scripture and through the school’s value of Perseverance.

“PT gives children real confidence through encouraging students on how their Christian faith can help them to succeed in sport. It is designed to develop students’ understanding of the Christian faith in the world outside formal collective worship, counterbalancing all the negative role models in sport, and most significantly it helps teachers see how Christian values can be taught through the curriculum.”

Dan Oakes, Headteacher of St Bartholomew’s Primary Academy said by email:
“We are really excited to welcome Project Touchline into our school. We are one of the first schools to access this pioneering way of linking Christian values with sport.

“Chris provides professional sports coaching in gymnastics, rugby, football, hockey, cricket, dodgeball, netball and athletics. He also teaches four Christian values linked to scripture through each of the sports each day.

“The children live out the values through prayer/faith. Perseverance - “Let us run with perseverance the race that lies before us. Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from beginning to end” Hebrews 12.1-2 Courage - "Perfect love casts out all fear” 1 John 4.18 Friendship - “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” Matthew 7.12 Respect - “Encourage one another and build each other up” 1 Thessalonians 5.1.”

For any more information please contact Chris Andrew, Project Touchline on 07867 317206 or .

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