Pope condemns dark side of sport
Pope John Paul II opened the two-day Jubilee of Athletes on Saturday by praising the positive aspects of the sports world but warning of its possible pitfalls.
Speaking to an audience that included International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio Samaranch, John Paul praised the 'spiritual and human ideals' he said sports can embody.
However, the Holy Father, an active skier and hiker in his younger days, stressed in his opening address to a Sports Jubilee that 'sports is not an end, but a means'.
"It can become a vehicle of civility and genuine fun, pushing people to give the best of themselves on the field, shunning that which can be of danger or serious damages to themselves or others," he said.