Vatican summit to foster inclusion and access to sport for all

The Vatican’s Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life is set to host an International Summit on Sport, scheduled for 29-30 September, as a way to urge the sector to guarantee the right to enjoy sport that is cohesive, accessible and tailored to each person.

By Vatican News staff writer

An International Summit on Sport, promoted by the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life, in collaboration with the Dicastery for Culture and Education and the John Paul II Foundation for Sport, is scheduled to take place in the Vatican on 29 and 30 September.

Themed “Sport for All: Cohesive, Accessible and Tailored to each person,” the Summit will bring together major sports and intergovernmental institutions and organizations to “respond to the Holy Father’s calls on the social responsibility of sports and the importance of sports practice as a means of human, educational and spiritual growth,” read a statement announcing the summit.

Declaration on Sport

During the international summit, a Declaration will be presented that invites the world of sport to embrace three fundamental characteristics: cohesive, accessible and tailored to each person.

“Cohesive”- the first keyword – highlights the need to “reduce the gap between grassroots and professional sports, in the belief that the unity of sport is a value to be safeguarded and nurtured.” The second, “accessible,” aims to guarantee all people the right to practice sport regardless of their social conditions; and the third, “tailored” focuses on enabling all people to participate in sports, even if they have physical or mental disabilities or psychological hardships.

At the end of the Summit, participants will be invited to sign the declaration with “a commitment to increasingly promote in their own institutions and sports organizations the social and inclusive dimension of sport.” The invitation will also be extended to all sports entities, starting with those inspired by the Christian vision of the person and of sport itself, by participating in the online subscription.

Participation from sports associations, others

The event, which will be held in the New Synod Hall in the Vatican, continues the journey started with the “Sport at the Service of Humanity” International Meeting held in 2016 and “Giving the Best of Yourself” – the Holy See’s first integral document on sport published on 1 June 2018.

The International Summit provides for the participation of about 200 people from the world of sports, International Sports Federations, as well as amateur Sports Associations.

Representatives of different Christian denominations and other religions will also be present, in addition to non-profit organizations and educational institutions working for inclusion in society through sport.

Speakers at the Summit will also be joined by athletes who, from their own experiences, will testify to how sport can be “an opportunity for redemption, encounter, inclusion and fullness of life.”