Socktober 2022: Mercy College students pull up their socks for charity

22 June 2022

Cardinal Souraphiel with Mercy College Soccer Academy Director Tristram Morgan at the Socktober-Scrosoppi Cup event on 3 June, at Mercy College.

Two of Australia’s finest school-based soccer teams from Mercy College were handpicked for the Catholic Mission’s Socktober program, facing off in the inaugural Socktober-Scrosoppi Cup on 3 June.

Socktober is a nationwide event held in October during World Mission Month, it aims to encourage Catholic students to engage with their ‘heads, hearts, and hands’ through the power of sport.

Funds raised this year will be channeled to support the nutrition, health and education needs of Ethiopian children in remote communities.

Present for the event was Catholic Mission’s special guest Ethiopian Cardinal Berhaneyesus Souraphiel CM. Joining His Eminence, Catholic Education Director of Religious Education Reverend Mark Powell, Mercy College Chaplain Father Albert Saminedi, Mercy College Principal Lisa Fogliani, staff, and enthusiastic students.

The Cardinal thanked Catholic schools for their annual involvement in Socktober, citing that their participation was “an act of solidarity with children living in poverty in Ethiopia and throughout the majority of the world”.

“The Socktober-Scrosoppi Cup is a symbol linking our call to mission with a soccer game that reinforces Pope Francis’ message of how sport can promote inclusion, diversity, friendship, and peace in both our local and global community,” the Cardinal said.

“Mercy College has one of the largest and most diverse school-based soccer academies in Australia, with an impressive program that integrates sport with community service and social justice that is very much aligned with Catholic Mission’s Socktober.”

“The Socktober-Scrosoppi Cup is a symbol linking our call to mission with a soccer game that reinforces Pope Francis’ message of how sport can promote inclusion, diversity, friendship, and peace in both our local and global community.”

Ethiopian Cardinal Berhaneyesus Souraphiel

Rev Powell, in his address, spoke about the influence of sports both in Australian and Catholic culture.

“Pope Francis has consistently spoken about the importance of sport and exercise for a healthy body and a healthy mind, and our Australian Catholic Bishops have reiterated this in their own statement, emphasising the importance of sport for all people, particularly young people.”

He said the combination of sport, coupled with the work that is carried out by Catholic Mission to raise money for those in need, is something that Catholic schools highly commend and encourage.

Soccer Academy Director Tristram Morgan said the Mercy College Specialist Soccer Program founded in 2012 by former principal Dr Tony Curry, was the largest in the country, with more than 550 students from Years 1 to 12 training and playing weekly.

With more than 1000 competitive games and 26 State Finals under their belt, Mr Morgan said soccer had a huge influence on the school’s culture.

“In many ways, soccer is a common language, it fosters belonging and strengthens our community,” he said.

“Through our soccer program, we have become a platform that has a voice and advocates for the poor, the vulnerable, and the exploited in our world today.

“It was an absolute honour and privilege to host today’s event in the presence of the Cardinal, whilst raising money for Catholic Mission.”

To register your school for Socktober from 23 June, go to https://www.socktober.org.au/

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