Sunday, January 19, 2014
What a great college football season for the state of South Carolina. Carolina beats Wisconsin in the Capital One Bowl and Clemson bashes Ohio State in the Orange Bowl. Both teams finish in the Top 10.
It is amazing to see the progress and status of our two top universities’ football programs to excel in the same year. What is also amazing is how the followers of both schools listen to and respond to the sparring words of their coaches concerning their state rivals. Carolina coach, Steve Spurrier said, “These two Capital One Bowls in a row are pretty nice, but that state championship ain’t bad either.” Two days later after Clemson’s win in the Orange Bowl, and in an attempt to get the last laugh after the Orange Bowl win, Dabo Swinney threw a jab back at South Carolina by saying, “We’ve entered uncharted waters and stand alone. We’re the first team from South Carolina to ever win a BCS Bowl.”
Boy, did the fans ever respond in support of their perspective beloved coaches. They took to Facebook, internet sports sites, and Twitter. The coaches trolling lit them up. Emotions ran wild with fiery comments from both sides. Fans were behind them. It has been entertaining to watch but also remarkable to see how people unite to support the words of their leaders. We are prone to react emotionally by saying things. Then we react by becoming involved by putting stickers and decals on our cars, buying t-shirts and hats. All driven by the expressions stated by the coaches and don them with pride. Great things happen when communities come together behind a cause.
That is what followers do when they are inspired by the words of their leader.
Following the teachings of Jesus, we are called to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty and clothes the naked. Pope Frances said in his hope for the New Year, “We are also called to see the violence and injustices present in so many parts of the world and which cannot leave us indifferent and immobile. There is the need for the commitment of all to build a society that is truly more just and united.”
In 2008, East Cooper Community Outreach launched an initiative to eliminate poverty in the East Cooper communities.
In order to meet that goal, our program efforts strive towards helping the poor and working poor become self-sufficient, independent of government assistance. Accomplishing this ambitious challenge requires we come together as a community.
Everybody can help - no matter if you are rich or poor. Everyone has something to give. Christ Our King Catholic Church conducts an annual member inventory survey with its parishioners called Time Talent and Treasure. The purpose is to let every member know they are to contribute to the cause of the church in one way or another. In other words, everyone has been blessed in some way and their participation is imperative for the mission to be advanced. Everyone in East Cooper has been blessed in one way or another. There are so many ways anyone can be involved in contributing to our mission at ECCO. You can mentor an at-risk child. You can donate money or volunteer. Can you repair a car? If you can read, you can help someone else read. Tutoring a friend, sitting with an elderly neighbor, watching a neighbor’s child, providing a ride – these are all ways you can help. Giving a hand - fixing a meal - with each and every resident doing his or her part, we can beat poverty.
Jack Little is executive director of East Cooper Community Outreach.