Blessing and Sending on the Football Field
“Leatherhead” is a term used to describe an old-fashioned leather football helmet — symbolizing bravery, integrity, honor and pride. While today’s helmets have (thankfully) advanced in technology, Valor’s football program seeks to embody the same qualities in its players and coaches. On the varsity through freshman teams, players are constantly pointed toward their most important goal of glorifying God and growing into men of character.
With an invitation to participate in Coach Welchert’s Blessing of the Helmets Ceremony, Valor’s freshman football players were ushered into the most unusual fall sports season in memory scrimmaging and holding their own against Valor’s JV Football team.
After the game, Coach Welchert led the freshman players in a ceremony by calling on the Class of 2024 to kneel before God, parents and coaches in a circle on the practice field, spaced six feet apart. “In a sport of high spirited competition I want to remind you through kneeling to be men of humility,” said Coach Welchert. “To honor the dignity of your life in and behind your helmet. To offer the same respect to the other young men that you compete against.”
Nearly all 40 players knelt and faced their parents and coaches laid hands on their student’s head, as they held their helmet. “We prepare under the covering of your parent’s hearts and authority, and we boldly ask God’s blessing upon your football helmet. Please join me in agreement as we pray over your sons and ask God’s protection over their lives and their helmets.”
After Valor varsity football’s strong 3-0 start, and the freshman team’s 2-0 (as of this story) kickoff, all players will don their helmets for the rest of their season, remembering the promises and prayers that got them started.
HELMET BLESSING PRAYER
“Father, thank you for these brave and courageous young men, sons in the homes of their mothers and fathers. We humbly and earnestly ask that you bless these helmets that will be worn by these players, and our sons who kneel before you and us today.
We pray that you will help these young men to remember and use all they have learned and been trained to do to protect themselves and one another. May they always know you are with them, and may they receive now your divine protection and blessing each and every time they wear their helmet.
We give thanks for all of those who have trained these young men throughout their days and years of playing football and for those who will continue to be their mentors and coaches.
We offer this prayer in humility and in trust of your unfailing and ever abiding love for them. Hold each of them in your care, now and forever. All this we ask in the name of Jesus, the Crucified. He whose most sacred head was wounded so that we might be clothed and dressed in all of the armor of God, including the helmet of salvation.
At this time I would ask the Valor Christian HS freshman football players of the class of 2024 to rise up like an Eagle and put on your helmet. With your helmet on your head we will now anoint the crown of your helmet as a sign of the Holy Spirit’s powerful protection throughout your career of playing football.
In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Amen.”
— Coach Michael Welchert, Valor Head Freshman Football Coach