Continuing to Strive for the Dream of ‘Every’


Continuing to Strive for the Dream of ‘Every’

It’s never an ordinary soccer tour with Athletes in Action

Kayla Jenerette

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At Athletes in Action, we dream of the day when there is a Christ-follower on every team, in every sport, in every nation.

Athletes in Action currently serves in over 60 countries across the globe. While ground is being made in the journey to reach every country, this number is still quite shy of the ambitious goal.

To continue making this dream of Every a reality, plans for ministry partnership in a new country are in the making.

Two years ago, the 1st of three annual trips to the country of Portugal took place. With a soccer team of men’s Division 1 collegiate athletes, the first trip was to:

  • Serve the people

  • Identify open doors

  • Create relationship opportunities

The team met Andre, a man from Brazil who felt God tug on his heart to start an Athletes in Action presence in Portugal. After one year of prepping and stepping out in faith, Andre is close to being fully funded to start the mission he knows God put on his life.

This summer, a group of Division 1 women’s soccer players traveled on the 2nd trip to Portugal from May 14-30. They continued to build on the foundation the men’s team laid the previous year.

During their time in Portugal, the women’s team was hosted by BENFICA, a top professional futball league in the area. In terms of titles won, they are the most successful club and are the current champions. According to the trip director, Amanda, partnering with BENFICA is huge for Athletes in Action because of their platform of influence throughout Portugal.

“They are a very well-respected program. Our goal is to plant seeds, cultivate rich relationships and trust God to take care of the rest. We believe this trip built on the last [trip] and is providing stepping stones for a fruitful future…” -Amanda, Soccer Director

Andre also served alongside this second trip to continue to listen, learn, and look for others to help aid the launch of Athletes in Action as he anticipates starting his career as a sports minister in Portugal soon.

Plans are being made to return next year, support Andre and ultimately establish a full-time presence throughout these Portuguese communities. Dreams take time — but this trip, and more to come, is one exciting step toward the God-given vision to reach every team, in every sport, in every nation.