WEA Sends Greeting Message for FIFA World Cup Opening Ceremony

June 12, 2014

Brazilian President Dilma Roussef requested the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) to send a greeting message to be read at the Opening Ceremony of the FIFA World Cup, emphasizing the importance of sports as a tool for social inclusion and promoting peace. The following is the letter that Dr. Geoff Tunnicliffe, Secretary General, sent on behalf of the WEA:

Dear Madame President Dilma Roussef, 

Warmest greetings from the World Evangelical Alliance that represents 650 million Christians from around the world. Together we offer to you and to all those gathered for the World Cup the following reflection based on our faith and trust in Jesus Christ.

In Revelation, the last book of the Bible, St. John describes a beautiful image of a feast. There is a grand celebration that gathers people from all around the planet to celebrate and to rejoice together in the peace that Jesus is in himself and that he has brought to all of creation. It is an extraordinary vision: a banquet table that has no end and where love - God's love - rules and permeates all who are there.

What is also amazing is that though all are guests at the celebration – as all players, fans and officials are at this World Cup – they remain different and diverse, with their own nationalities and languages, tribes and colors.

The World Cup in Brazil is a chance for people from all over the world to come together recognizing our differences yet celebrating the multiplicity of God's creation. It is the hope and prayer of all of us from the World Evangelical Alliance that this World Cup will be marked by joy, peace and goodwill, as we all enjoy the beautiful dance that is football in this beautiful country that has gifted the world with some of the game's best dancers.

In Christ,

Dr. Geoff Tunnicliffe
Secretary General
World Evangelical Alliance