Soccer and the Sabbath

“Soccer and the Sabbath,” Friend, May 2021

Soccer and the Sabbath

This story took place in Honduras.

“Saturday is a special day. It’s the day we get ready for Sunday” (Children’s Songbook, 196).

Samuel’s Saturday got in the way of his Sunday.

Father and Son

Samuel loved to watch television with Papá, especially on Saturdays. Papá worked hard all week. But on Saturday, Mamá cooked pastelitos de piña (pastries with pineapple filling) and they all watched TV together.

One Saturday night, they decided to watch a partido de fútbol (soccer game). But the game started late, and it would last for a long time. When the first half was over, the score was 0-0. Samuel wanted to keep watching. But he couldn’t stop yawning.

“Time for bed, Samuelito,” Mamá said gently. “You need to get some sleep so you can stay awake in church tomorrow.”

“But Mamá,” Samuel said, “it’s two of the best teams in Honduras!”

Papá looked at the clock. “All right. You can keep watching. But you need to get up on time tomorrow.”

The game got even more exciting in the second half. Samuel was wide awake now! He and Papá were both cheering. First there was a corner kick. Then the goalie made a great save. One team scored, and then the other. Before Samuel knew it, the game was over. It ended in a 1-1 tie.

The next morning, Samuel was so tired that he didn’t want to get out of bed. But he knew that going to church was important.

During sacrament meeting, Samuel started to fall asleep. His head kept nodding. Mamá poked him to help him stay awake. But he was so tired that he didn’t pay attention to the speakers.

“I think your Saturday is getting in the way of your Sunday,” Papá said.

In Primary, Samuel’s teacher talked about keeping the Sabbath day holy. She asked what the children could do to make Sunday special. Samuel thought for a minute. Then he said, “Go to bed on time on Saturday!”

When they got home after church, Samuel talked to Mamá and Papá. “I had fun watching the game last night,” Samuel said. “But I should have gone to bed earlier. I think we should use part of Saturday to get ready for Sunday.”

“I agree,” Papá said.

Mamá nodded. “Me too.”

The next Saturday, there was another game on TV.

“What should we do tonight?” Papá asked. “The game goes late again.”

“We could watch a movie instead,” Mamá said.

“Or we could go for a walk,” said Samuel.

“Is a walk OK with you?” Papá asked Mamá.

“Of course,” Mamá said. “It’s just nice to be together as a family.”

“And when we come home,” Samuel said, “we can all get a good night’s sleep. Then we’ll be ready for Sunday!”

Friend Magazine, Global 2021/05 May