Combining a Love of Sport with Evangelism

How 1 staff member connects with students through soccer

  • by Cynthia Oh

"I think I have been a soccer fanatic since I was born," says Ivin Vikesh, a Cru staff member in Singapore.

Born in a family of soccer fans, he has faithfully woken up at 2 a.m. to watch the World Cup since he was 3 years old, and he owns 10 jerseys from the local Football Club.

Now, for about a year, he has been coaching some campus students in Nanyang Polytechnic in his free time.

"It came about when I found out most of the students I was mentoring enjoy sports, and so we started playing soccer. And we began to have friendly matches with some non-Christians," says Ivin.

Soon, the non-Christians were learning to play from him. What was originally a workout time turned out to be an opening for evangelism.

"Those guys would turn up faithfully for training every week, and at each session we would have about 6 or 7 pre-believers joining us," shares Ivin, who enforces fair play and discipline on the guys. Through the weekly training sessions, relationships grew.
One of the pre-believers, Randy, asked Ivin, "Are you a Christian?"

"Yup!" replied Ivin.

"Do you mind sharing why you became a Christian?" Randy continued.

"Of course I don't mind!" exclaimed Ivin, who proceeded to tell his story.

"Even though Randy has yet to receive Christ, I'm excited about the potential of sports ministry and how the gospel seed can be planted," shares Ivin.

Randy, a first-year business student at NYP, has since been attending Cru events and even invited Ivin and some Cru disciples to his recent birthday party.