CrossTraining – Colorado Springs Switchbacks chaplaincy

8198_colorado_springs__switchbacks_fc-primary-2015End of season always brings a mix of emotions. For chaplains and those they serve the end of year is often bittersweet with goodbyes and transitions as well as hope for next season and all the moves in between. The Colorado Springs Switchbacks chaplaincy received excellent feedback for the 2016 season. Pastor Kurt Trempert, the Switchbacks Lead Chaplain, will continue for the 2017 season. For next season, one of the goals is to begin growing the chaplain team that serves the United Soccer League (USL) side.

CrossTraining Executive Director, Rev. Brad Kenney met with Jeremy Auyer, the Switchbacks Director of Soccer Operations, who shared,

The partnership with Kurt and Brandon has allowed our club to focus on caring for our athletes on a relational level instead of just a transactional level. We are able to care for who they are as people instead of just what they provide our organization.

Director Kenney, also remarked,

Kurt did a great job in supporting the team and the Switchbacks organization. His work is  reflected in how he is received. The consistency and constancy of a chaplain like Kurt goes a long way in helping address the various needs of those connected to the Switchbacks and other teams in the USL.

The Switchbacks finished 3rd overall in the USL West Conference. The team lost a closely contested match at home in the first round of the playoffs.

Trempert was on sabbatical for a portion of the Switchbacks season. In his stead, another local pastor filled in to offer a supportive presence. Director Kenney reflected on the opportunity,

The unique situation of having Trempert on sabbatical may have been a blessing in disguise. One of our goals is to grow a team of chaplains and counselors around a team because we see them as a community. CrossTraining isn’t just focused on the locker room – but beyond. Coaches, staff, family members and even fans at a certain point can all receive from the service of a chaplain and counselor. Trempert’s sabbatical allowed us to see someone else serve and may pave a possible path to growing the team.

CrossTraining chaplains and counselors do not receive funding from any club or the league, either. Director Kenney shared his hopes for the growth with the Switchbacks,

We have some local church partners that are helping to meet some of the needs. A lunch for some of these guys goes a long way. Some guys are on $500 a month with an 8-month contract. After you pay the bills, there isn’t much left. A Chipotle burrito by the local chaplain is something you look forward to. We also need some financial support for the Springs – there is more that we can do to serve.

If interested in helping support CrossTraining’s efforts with the Colorado Springs Switchbacks chaplaincy, please contact CrossTraining: info@crosstraining-us.org.

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