|following the championship game last sunday|
those are some of the comments that local men make to the varsity rhinos. they tell us about it all the time. what makes it worse, is that many of their own dads, grandfathers, and uncles are the ones who say it.
its an abusive, macho culture, and its been that way forever. we've had men come and tell us they dont like what we're teaching the boys about women, because "women have their place, and it needs to stay that way."
all of this is what made last week that much more special. for the first time, we hosted a "buena vista indoor men's tournament." its something we've been wanting to do for a while - reach out to local men, let them feel included in the academy and what we are doing.
they were beyond excited. the local men formed their teams. a point system would determine the seeding for the playoffs, the champions would receive a trophy.
our rhinos were in the middle of the field come playoff time. we had won a couple games, and lost a couple. in the first round of the playoffs we drew the only undefeated team. it was alan's brother's team. (alan is one of our younger varsity rhinos.) literally the entire starting 5 players were alan's brother's!
in dramatic fashion, alan, who hadn't scored a goal the entire tournament, scord the game winning goal with 30 seconds left in the game! needless to say it was a confidence boost, and a very special moment for alan.
in the finals, we won handily. 12 to 5. you would have thought we won the world cup.
from simply a soccer standpoint, it was amazing to watch. the boys have improved so much. hard work is paying off. they no doubt earned some respect from the men of the village. these are 15-16 year old boys beating grown men who play in soccer leagues every week.
i know for mynor it had to be sweet. its been hard to break down the bad habits and start from scratch. teaching organized, controlled soccer to young men who have played street ball their whole lives is not easy. and they won because they stayed calm, played their formations, etc.
but so much more is happening.
i am thankful for our team on the ground here. so thankful for mynor and walda. for our new addition of the davis family. i believe that God is doing amazing things here, in and through our team, our supporters, and ultimately in these boys.
last weekend was a special memory in the midst of it all.