Milo Varsity Teams Make Spiritual Impact

In a world where sports focus on winning at all costs, Milo Adventist Academy still encourages a Christ-like attitude. Whether on or off the court, players integrate Christian principles into all their actions.

Opposing coaches and principals regularly compliment Bill Lambie, Milo’s varsity coach, on the high level of sportsmanship shown by his teams. A local school principal recently told Lambie, "Your varsity boys showed more Christian sportsmanship than any team we have ever played against."

"People really like playing Milo because of our sportsmanship," stated Beth-Anne Laspe, a senior. "And we’re really bonded. We’re really close."

Founded in 1991, the varsity sports program encourages social activity and involvement, increases school spirit, promotes physical fitness and creates bonds between fellow students and faculty. At Milo, life values such as responsibility, teamwork, effort and sportsmanship are emphasized instead of winning. Students who participate in sports are inspired to do their best, not only on the basketball court but in class and in relationships with God and their peers.

The varsity teams spend many hours on the road together, and that time is spent developing friendships that will last a lifetime. "Winning isn’t everything," explained Scott Rae, also a senior. "People are more important than the game."

Lambie hosts worship and prayer before each practice or game. Teams huddle before games and during halftime to discuss their sportsmanship. Lambie's number one goal for the team is that all the players will be in heaven someday—he’s just building their basketball skills on the way. "I’m trying to help the players become the best they can be," he said.

When students at other schools see how a Milo student reacts to an unfair call or a harsh foul, they are surprised. When they see the team encouraging instead of berating someone who messed up, they are startled. When they see Milo’s players walk away smiling after a loss, they are astounded. "Other teams notice how we behave, and we are constantly witnessing to other schools through our actions," said Ashley Reynolds, a sophomore.

Varsity sports are just one more way the students at Milo Academy can testify to Jesus’ love.

April 01, 2004 / Oregon Conference