Can Prayer Help You Win Games? Many Believe So

Can Prayer Help You Win Games? Many Believe So

Dolores Mejia thought the Chicago Bears could use Ave Maria.

And multiple. In fact, he prayed several times in his 1986 Super Bowl, where his team won New England. became.


“I was happy. I couldn’t believe it,” said Mejia.

Praying to the Lord isn’t part of most sports fans’ strategy, but Mejia and others like her are convinced that prayer can influence outcomes. According to a NORC Public Relations Center survey, about three in ten adults in the United States believe they can help determine the outcome of a game.

A survey found that 23% of professional sports fans have prayed during a game. Certain beliefs of people are a factor. 35% of evangelicals said they pray, compared to 21% of other religions.

You don’t have to be a believer to pray. According to a survey, 15% of his non-religious fans believe in the power of prayer in sports.

Mejia, a 73-year-old Catholic born in Chicago who now lives in Peoria, Arizona, has been praying since she was a child and says that prayer calms her down when she experiences tense situations in sports or in life. increase.

However, she often admits to being disappointed. Mejia, who doesn’t go to church regularly, says she no longer prays for the Bears. He just wants a friend with a serious health problem. “The Bears are a mess. They will never win,” he lamented.

Still, it is certain that her Super Bowl prayers were answered on that day in January 1986.

Does this mean God is a Bears fan? Or does it favor other teams?

“I don’t think God cares at all who wins,” said Reverend Burke Masters, a Catholic priest who celebrates Mass for Chicago Cubs players and staff as team chaplain.

During the historic 2016 season, when Chicago’s team won the baseball championship for the first time in over 100 years, he was called upon to congratulate in front of television cameras for the ninth time. He prayed that no one was hurt.

“What happens when a person prays? Certainly yes. A lot of people. But I think there’s quite a bit of superstition involved in prayer related to sports,” says Masters, who played baseball in college and minor leagues. “Baseball players are especially superstitious.

Dinah Patton is a fan of the Bronchos, a high school football team from Odessa, Texas. He is a member of the Baptist Church at his age of 32, but does not attend mass regularly. However, he prays with his children every night and believes that prayers can affect the outcome of the game.

“We want more than victory. We don’t want to be greedy,” Patton said. He also hopes the players stay injury-free, do well and are good kids, he added.

“Our prayers are full of hope,” he explained.

Rashed Fakhruddin, a Muslim fan of several Nashville teams, says when they lose, he asks God, “We’ve suffered so much, get us through this bad time.”

The survey was conducted on 1,054 adults from September 9-12 using a sample drawn from NORC’s AmeriSpeak panel based on the law of probability representing the US population. The sample error bars are plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.


AP’s religious coverage is supported through a partnership between AP and The Conversation US with funding from Lilly Endowment Inc. AP is solely responsible for the content.


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