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Praise The Lord's - Anglicans Accept Vatican Cricket Challenge

posted 22 Dec 2013, 05:34 by Mpelembe Admin   [ updated 22 Dec 2013, 05:35 ]

The Anglican Church accepts a Vatican challenge to a cricket match, with Lord's cited as a possible venue.

ROMEITALY (DECEMBER 20, 2013) (REUTERS) -  The Church of England confirmed on Friday (December 20) that is has accepted a challenge from the Vatican, not for a theological re-match almost 500 years after they split -- but on the cricket pitch.

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The Vatican will be represented by the best players from a new club and league, who will meet an Anglican side, probably next September at Lord's in London.

The confirmation came at a news conference given by the Archbishop ofCanterbury's representative at the Vatican, Archbishop David Moxon and proponents of the Catholic league including Australia's ambassador to the Vatican John McCarthy and Pontifical college director Father Eamonn O'Higgins.

At the news conference, Archbishop Moxon quoted a letter to the Anglican churchfrom Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, in effect the Vatican's culture minister.

"We thought that the first major international initiative of this club could be a cricket match with a similar body from the Church of England, to which we are so closely united in our Christian faith. The match could be a moment for sharing the joy of cricket with each other, but even more to give a witness to the rest of the world how sports can promote spirituality and togetherness. It has been proposed that the match could be played possibly at Lord's, London, the home of cricket. some time in September 2014," Archbishop Moxon quoted.

He also read from the Archbishop of Canterbury's reply, in which the Anglican leader referred to England's recent loss of the Ashes to Australia: "His Grace is delighted to receive the letter from Cardinal Ravasi and looks forward to the togetherness and team sport that is being offered. He is also particularly encouraged by this initiative because of the response it has already had informally around the world. He looks forward to the possibility that this match may actually raise money for charity, although that is yet to be determined and would depend on the amount actually raised beyond the team costs. He also wanted me to say quite emphatically that, in receiving this challenge, he has actually forgiven the Australian cricket team and looks forward to -- and looks forward to a different kind of enterprise in this forthcoming game at Lord's in September."

Father O'Higgins presented a ceremonial cricket ball to Archbishop Moxon.

It's not known whether Pope Francis will attend the challenge match, because he is a soccer fan, supporting the San Lorenzo football club of his native Buenos Aires.