CWN - A Saudi Arabian cleric has called upon the organizers of international soccer competition to bar players from making the Sign of the Cross.

Mohammend Alarefe, an Islamic leader whose Twitter account reaches more than 17 million followers, objected to the fact that many soccer players bless themselves in celebration after scoring a goal.

The prevalence of religious symbols in international soccer competition has become a point of dispute in Islamic countries. This year a leading Spaniard team, Real Madrid, agreed to remove the cross from team merchandise sold in the Middle East.

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Teachings of Christ

“The Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45 ESV)

Dormition

O Mother of God, in giving birth you preserved virginity; * and in falling asleep you did not forsake the world. * You are the Mother of Life and have been transferred to life, * and through your prayers you deliver our souls from death. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Neither the tomb nor death could detain the Mother of God, * who is unsleeping in her prayers and our unfailing hope in her intercession; * for He Who dwelt in her ever-virgin womb, * transferred to Life the Mother of Life. (Kontakion - Tone 2)

Random Proverb

For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. (Proverbs 2:6 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

But if a person is constantly mindful of God, he will rejoice: as the psalmist says, "I remembered God, and I rejoiced" (Psalms 77:3). For when the intellect is gladdened by the remembrance of God, then it forgets the afflictions of this world, places its hope in Him, and is no longer troubled or anxious.

St. Peter of Damaskos, "JOY" (from "The 24 Discourses), "The Philokalia vol. III," - pp. 260 - 263.