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Two years ago one of our team members Ken Cross did a survey of existing sports chaplains, he asked them one simple question?  What is your biggest challenge?  The answers came back consistently time and time again – isolation and finance.  Chaplains reported to be often misunderstood in their churches, the congregation not having a clear comprehension of the demands of the role and assuming it was just a ministry jolly – the opportunity to rub shoulders with the sporting famous and get free tickets. If only they knew.

Chaplains also struggled with their identity within the club and sport where they operated.  That insider / outsider feeling we all know so well, where their role is not communicated effectively to the team.  A surprising finding from the research was many chaplains who were part of sports ministry organizations also experienced the same levels of remoteness.

Jesus’ model for going out into the world is pretty clear in Luke 10:1, they went two by two.  So should it be any different for sports chaplains?  Of course it is difficult if we go against a scriptural precedent!  It is though not as simple as that, sporting environments are fiercely protected – often fortresses particularly at an elite level, getting one chaplain in is a challenge, never mind two.  So what’s the solution?

Four ways for sports chaplains to guard against isolation:

1. Have you considered the option of trying to bring in another chaplain to your setting?  We believe chaplaincy operates best, where possible, in teams.  For example a number of clubs are taking in a chaplain for their academy team, or reserves, or to focus on the admin team, etc.

2.  Could you link up with a Christian at your sports setting that you could join with and pray for your local sport together?

3.   Are there a couple of friends at church who you could meet with openly and discuss the challenges you face and pray together?

4.  Are there other sports chaplains that you could connect with and be mutually accountable?

The 4th reason is why we have set up ‘CEDE Network – the worldwide sports chaplaincy registry’ to allow sports chaplains to connect with each other and encourage one another in their ministry.
To help us all feel connected and together as we seek to serve the world of professional and amateur sport.  If you are a Sports Chaplain please join us for free support and resource at the CEDE Network.

Please follow along as we look at chaplaincy in a politically correct culture in next month’s blog.


Rich Gamble

CEDE Network Director


We are very excited about the future God has for us at CEDE Partners.

In the light of that excitement, we have designed a new website.  We have even changed our name to reflect more who we are and where we are going.

With all these changes, some very core components of what we do will stay the same.

We will continue to offer worthwhile content via our blog.

Since 2009, we averaged 3-5 blogs per week (previously in the CSO Blog) generating a total of 1194 posts in that time.  To be honest, when we started, we didn’t know how our “voice” would be received, but we stepped out in faith and started “speaking” through this blog.  The response has been tremendous.  We now average about 60,000 visitors a year a from over 160 countries, having started with 5,000 visitors per year from less than 30 countries.

This response, along with the urging of God, encourages us to press on.  Our goal is still to have 3 posts per week.  We plan to bring those posts along the following subjects:

1) Gospel Centricity – including discussions on

– What is the Gospel?
– What is Gospel Centered Living?  Gospel Centered Ministry?  Gospel Centered Leadership?

2) Evangelism/Discipleship – including

– The relationship between the two
– The scriptural foundation for both
– Proven methods and practices for both

3) Ministry Development – including

– Coach Recruiting and Development
– Volunteer Recruiting and Development
– Staff Development
– Parent and Player Development

4) Current Trends – particularly in the areas of Technology and Resources

5) Competition/Sports – including discussions about

– Broken sports
– Redeemed sports
– Performance sports – vision and information to help churches deal with travel and competitive sports

6) Fitness – general info but also specifics on how to bring gospel centricity to this area of growing interest in our society

7) Stories – from Local Churches, Leaders, and Ministries

8) Local Church – analysis and trends that impact the sports, rec and fitness ministry movement

9) CEDE Sports – who we are, what we do

10) Personal Growth – spiritually, as a leader, mentally, etc.

We are looking for guest authors and suggestions for posts.  If you have any suggestions for either, please email them to

We will also continue to offer strategic resources.

God has impressed on us the importance of “holding fast to the Gospel” (1 Corinthians 15:1,2) and a vision of Gospel Centricity as it applies to life and ministry.  He has given us tools to share that vision with the sports, rec, and fitness ministry movement.  He has blessed these tools as He uses them in the development of effective, multiplying Gospel Centered Sports Ministries.  We continue to pray for further tools to help the movement and will add those to these resources as they become available.

With our new website, we are taking the availability of these tools to another level.  In the RESOURCES section for Churches – all resources from CEDE Partners are FREE for Church Directory Members.  (To join the free Directory, click here.)  We will work to the develop further resources to benefit the movement and offer them from this heart of CEDE Sports (Cede means to yield or submit.)

We are also offering churches and partner Sports Ministries to put their materials in these RESOURCES so that sports, rec, and fitness ministers can find the resources they are looking for in one place.  We do this in the hope of connecting more and more churches to the resources that will fuel their participation in this movement.

If you have some materials you would like to make available in these resources, please email them to

The BLOG and these RESOURCES – two key components of what we will continue to do in the future.  To connect with them:

      Sign up for the BLOG and it will be delivered to your inbox.

      Sign up for the DIRECTORY and you will have access to every RESOURCE listed.

If you have already connected with these, please know we pray for you.  If you haven’t connected yet, we hope you will do so.  Our ongoing prayer is for God to be glorified through the expansion of the movement of sports, rec, and fitness ministries in local churches.  


Looking for Sports Outreach Group? We are now Cede Sports