Recently, the Colorado Rapids cleaned house – boxes of used team gear were simply taking up too much space in the confines of Dick’s Sporting Goods Park and after the annual “garage sale” for Rapids fans, there was still plenty left over. That’s when team staff contacted Rapids Chaplain Brad Kenney. The text message read:
Yo. We have 4 boxes of donations for you. Everything from boots to jerseys. You want to get them at some point?
Well, four boxes turned into 20 – jerseys, boots, pants, compression shirts and shorts, socks – the amount was nearly overwhelming. Chaplain Kenney conferenced with Associate Chaplains Hugo Venegas and Ricardo Orellana – how can we quickly move this gear and get it into the hands of people in need? Chaplain Orellana was scheduled for a Kenyan mission trip in March. Chaplain Venegas a trip to Costa Rica at the end of January. Perhaps between the two trips there would be a way to use the donated gear.
Chaplain Venegas sprang into action – putting some messages out to contacts in Costa Rica. Is there anyone who could use some team gear and equipment for their church or a local team? Pretty soon, Chaplain Venegas had 4 different project requests coming out of Costa Rica – a player training with a team in hopes of getting a contact in Major League Soccer, a church group praying for new team uniforms, and a couple of reservations with poor, indigenous people. As Chaplain Kenney opened the boxes, it was almost too overwhelming…Do you have an idea of sizes? (read a text message to Venegas).
I just remember looking at all the boxes in my living room, my children were trying to help me sort and count, and I panicked – what were we gong to do with all of the gear? Will we have enough? Too much?
Venegas texted back: Mas o Menos! I got quantity requests. I think mostly medium n large! As both men were helping sort and count out the different needs they were constantly amazed to see the requested numbers filled over and over again.
I think, in the end we were able to come up with nearly 8 teams of 11 kits each. Some had numbers, it wasn’t like we had an Adidas catalogue in front and could simply pick it out – we had to sort through a lot of piles – but it was amazing to see some of the numbers work out exactly to what the need was.
Chaplain Venegas drove away that night with enough gear to meet all the requested need and then some. We will post pictures and more of these amazing stories in the weeks to come. Please pray for safe travels and that the equipment will be a blessing to all those who receive.