Pope John Paul II Skiing Cup
If you have a priest or two whizzing past you on the slopes with cassocks billowing behind, don’t panic, it’s not a sign you’ve been on the piste, communion wine or got altitude sickness. In something that could almost have been an episode of the hit TV series Father Ted, the 21st Pope John Paul II Skiing Cup is currently taking place in Wisla, Poland. This eagerly awaited annual event is held for Catholic priests and members of their close family, although in recent years priests from other denominations have also competed.
These daredevil priests are out to demonstrate that you can be in the Catholic Church and have fun with healthy sport and “honest competition”. Age is no barrier to competing for the cup. The oldest priest to compete this year is the 76 year old (but fitter than most) Father Wladyslaw Nowobilski.
Check out the thrills and spills of this highlight of the winter sports holiday calendar with this video via Euronews:
One of the most successful and highly regarded popes, John Paul II was a hugely popular figure in his native Poland and the wider world. He was a a lifelong lover of many outdoor sports including hiking, kayaking, camping and skiing and the competition is held in his memory. He is reputed to have once said: “It’s unbecoming for a cardinal to ski badly.”
Although cassocks are not obligatory, they do look rather fetching on the ski slopes and we think it’s worth timing a winter holiday to coincide with the Pope John Paul II Skiing Cup next year. It’s got to be way cheaper than going to the Winter Olympics and much more fun to watch!
Now all we need is a few eager teams and somewhere to host the All-Priests Over-75’s Five-a-Side Football Championship!