The development of interscholastic sports in Seventh-day Adventist academies and colleges

Type: 
Internet-published Paper
Citation: 

Sather, B. A. (1996). The development of interscholastic sports in Seventh-day Adventist academies and colleges. Unpublished masters thesis, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT.

Abstract: 

The purpose of this research was to study the inclusion of interscholastic sports in Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) schools. Since the inception of Adventist education in 1874 the debate over the place of interschool sports has escalated. The current stance of the governing body of the SDA church toward interschool competition states it is opposed to interschool league play commonly known as varsity athletics.

The study by the researcher found 49 of 92 (53%) Seventh-day Adventist academies and colleges in the United States compete against non-SDA schools. Athletic directors at schools with interscholastic sports most frequently cited school spirit, witness opportunity, and opportunity for students to develop physical gifts as advantages of sports at their school. The author concluded that wholesome physical activities are consistent with doctrines of the SDA church and the writings of the prophetess Ellen G. White. Because of the advantages of interscholastic sports and the ambiguity of the current church statement, the SDA church should revise the current policy to one that sanctions sports programs that develop proper Christian values in SDA education. With the church’s support of the schools, standards and guidelines can be developed to provide proper direction to all SDA schools who wish to participate in organized athletics.

August 1996