The weekend of May 8-10, 2015, 180 participated in the 18th annual JPII Sports Tournament. This year included four sports, a catechism competition, and highlighted a first class relic of Saint John Paul II just a year after his canonization.
Boys in 3rd through 8th grade competed within one of three age brackets for the gold, silver, and bronze. Sports included soccer, basketball, frisbee, and hockey, and medals for the catechism competition were also awarded.
A special charity award was given to the team in each division who throughout the games showed the most Christ-like attitude, sportsmanship and honor.
The JPII tournament offers more than sports and competition. It offers an experience of Christ. In addition to celebrating Mass each morning, praying before games and meals, and saying the rosary at midday, participants have available up to five priests for confession. The JPII tournament was also blessed this year with the presence of a first class relic of John Paul II only a year after he was declared a saint.
The relic was held in a silver reliquary, an authentic replica of the reliquary used at the canonization Mass and crafted by the same artist. The relic was introduced after a solemn rosary led by Everest Chaplain Fr Thomas Salazar LC. Athletes were given a special blessing through the intercession of the Saint, and each had the opportunity to pray personally before the relic of our late Holy Father.
“I told the kids someone important was coming,” said the JPII Tournament Director, Br. Kevin Gore. “But they had no idea that it would be the Pope!”
The JPII Tournament is an annual ConQuest event held at Everest Academy in honor of Saint John Paul II, and provides a Christ-centered and competitive atmosphere of friendship and fun.
“It was impressive to see the boy’s attitude,” said Br. Kevin. “After a last-minute and hard fought win-loss scenario, I watched one team swallow their tears and the other temper their celebration, as they came together to pray and remind each other that win or lose, they were still brothers. That’s the JPII.”
A video and images from this year’s JPII are available at the JPII Tournament Website. Upcoming ConQuest events include Camp Mountaineer, an eight-day summer camp for middle school boys, as well as monthly missions to support the needy of Detroit in the 2015-16 school year. Find more about Camp Mountaineer at this website or on Facebook, or by searching #mountaineercamp.