THE Churches will be playing an outreach role when the Rugby World Cup kicks off on October 10.
Six hundred players comprising 20 teams will play 48 matches in front of more than 2 million spectators, 40,000 of them from overseas.
The tournament will also enable Christian Churches to engage in Christian outreach and spread the word of God to thousands of people during the event which runs from October 10-November 22.
Since the Sydney Olympics, Christian Churches have been working together to promote the Gospel through sports ministry.
Representatives of many different Christian Churches across Australia have joined together to plan a range of outreach activities during the series.
These activities will revolve around two major national programs – home hosting of players family members and the Rugby World Cup choir members and providing free face painting at entrances to all 11 match venues in Adelaide, Sydney, Canberra, Townsville, Gosford, Perth, Melbourne, Brisbane and Launceston.
In Brisbane, Archbishop John Bathersby will pray for players and fans attending the World Cup at a special Mass on October 16 at St Stephen’s Cathedral.