Baylor's Truett Seminary Receives a $600,000 Grant for Youth Spirituality and Sports Institute

Baylor's George W. Truett Theological Seminary received a $600,000 grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to establish the Youth Spirituality and Sports Institute: Running the Race Well (RRW).

This new institute at Baylor is part of Lilly Endowment's High School Youth Theology Institutes initiative, which seeks to encourage young people to explore their religious beliefs and their concerns about contemporary challenges by studying theology and examining how faith calls them to lives of service.

Truett Seminary is one of 82 schools participating in the initiative in 29 states and the District of Columbia. More than 22,000 young people have participated in these youth theology programs.

Truett Seminary's Running the Race Well (RRW) will provide a unique annual experience within a diverse community, using an eight-day, mentor-guided setting that helps teenagers become discerning, vibrant leaders in sports, church and beyond. Rising high school juniors and seniors years will be eligible to apply. The first RRW sessions will be offered during the summer of 2018.

Because this new institute will integrate research with practical application, RRW's local and global partnerships include collaborators such as Duke Divinity School, Oxford University (UK), Mission Waco, Baptist General Convention of Texas (BGCT), Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF), National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA), the Vatican's Office of Church and Sport, Waco churches and sports ministries and coaches.

"We want to help bridge the gap between Christian belief and behavior in the sphere of sports--to impact the X's and O's of sports with a compelling vision coupled with application for why we do sports as Christians," said John B. White, PhD, principal investigator and faculty director of RRW as well as director of Truett’s sports ministry/chaplaincy program.