The launch of the John Paul II Foundation for Sport (JP2F4S) Charity has taken place a year after the venture was first announced by Pope Benedict XVI during his visit to Britain.
The event took place on October 26 and was attended by 150 guests, among them Hugh Robertson, the Minister for Sport. The host of the event, Archbishop Vincent Nichols, set out the aims and objectives of the new charity. While Catholic in inspiration, the foundation’s activities will be available to all.
Professor Simon Lee, chairman of the Foundation Board, made it clear that JP2F4S would enable people to develop their potential guided by the principles identified by Pope John Paul II and set out in his declarations and writings.
Mgr Vladimir Felzmann, the driving force behind the foundation, spoke into a microphone while on top of a table doing 74 press-ups. He said that the foundation would enable people to develop their physical, intellectual, emotional and spiritual capacities (their “PIES of life”) through sport.
The foundation’s flotilla of activities will include education. JF2F4S will encourage parishes to use sport to build relationships with their local community and attract young people to the Church.
Given the recently identified needs of society its flagship activity will focus on community cohesion.
Identifying areas where street gangs are a problem, it will persuade and enable schools to open their sports facilities in the evenings, weekends and school holidays.