Soccer match will help spread the Pope’s message of peace to the world
August 28, 2014
Catholic soccer stars including Lionel Messi, Andrea Pirlo and Javier Zanetti will play in an “inter-religious match for peace” organized by the Vatican at the Olympic Stadium in Rome on 1 September.
Zanetti, told Vatican Radio: “When I spoke with Pope Francis about this project, it was a big concern for us to do something for world peace. I think the fact that so many stars have joined in can help professional football support peace. Although the game is raising money for charitable purposes, the most important thing we want to do is spread the Pope’s message of peace to the world.”
Along with Zanetti, other players expected to take part in the Inter-religious Match for Peace include Roberto Baggio, who is Buddhist, and Zinedine Zidane, who describes himself as a “non-practicing" Muslim. Other players reported to be making an appearance are Francesco Totti and Gianluigi Buffon.
The proceeds for the match will go to Scholas Occurrentes initiative, an Argentine project that aims to educate the poor in different countries around the world, Italy’s Fundazione PUPI, which works to unite people of different faiths and the United Nations’ Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organisation is also partnering with the event.