The Super Bowl and Catholics

Super Bowl XLVI logoTonight’s big game in Indianapolis actually started several weeks ago with the post-season playoffs. All those teams, vying for one of the two spots in tonight’s final showdown. I thought a lot about that this morning getting ready for church. Yep, it seems quite the leap but stick with me.

Out and about yesterday for regular Saturday/end-of-week errands, there were scores of people everywhere getting ready for the game, packing the grocery store aisles and packing their carts with all the various foods and beverages that are just as much a part of Super Bowl tradition as the coin toss that begins game-day strategy.

We make a big deal of this day, we Americans. We get new big-screen TVs, we buy munchies and beer, sodas and snacks, we wear our teams favorite colors, we hang out our flags, and we bet on who may or may not become the ultimate winner. Who will be “going to Disney World” — if they even still do that. But you get the point. It’s a huge ritual, a beloved pastime.

So, in getting ready for church this morning I was musing on how we look to prep ourselves for God’s big day—Sunday, the day for worship.

As Catholics, we are to prepare our hearts for the communion of our Lord (that’s actually the entire point of the Mass). Not to belabor the point, but I’m thinking we don’t do that well enough. We certainly don’t need to go to the extremes of putting together a big party, but I do think there should be time spent reflecting on the week just past and the new one that’s beginning. There should be time for preparing ourselves to come before God, before stepping onto His turf, so to speak.

I often notice people in church (and also in the corporate world) wearing the jerseys and numbers/names of their favored players. I’m all for being a fan, but I’ll be honest in saying that I find that an interesting choice of dress for a grown person to wear in church. I should be better than that, I guess; I should feel gladness for them choosing to be in church on Sunday, the big game day every week, and not so focused on what they are wearing (sorry, I still find it odd).

Secretly, though, I have the picture in my mind that if they wear sports jerseys to church with the names BRADY or MANNING emblazoned on the back, that maybe, just maybe…someone, somewhere might be sitting in the stadium in Indianapolis tonight with the name GOD proclaimed in that venue. That would be something to celebrate.


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