Our elite athletes are role models. We celebrate their victories and are inspired by their determination. In this series, I want to share some of the most inspirational athletes I know. My background in sport science and sports chaplaincy has brought me into contact with some amazing people.
They are unique people not just because of their athletic achievements but also because of their achievements outside of sport.
Priscilla Ruddle was captain of the Australian Women’s Volleyball Team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
She was a scholarship holder at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra and has earned a reputation as one of the most pivotal players in Australian volleyball.
However, Ruddle’s greatest inspiration comes from her post-volleyball career. Working as an engineer in Canberra she then pursued a call to missionary service.
This meant training at Sydney Missionary and Bible College before entering long-term service in the west African nation of Benin. In Benin, she has helped her new community with water and engineering projects as well as working with her local church.
I have heard Priscilla speak at numerous sports, youth and church events. She never missed an opportunity to move the conversation from the world of elite sport towards one on the love of Jesus and her desire to serve Him.
Priscilla Ruddle is a truly inspirational person. Her commitment to Jesus and her determination to serve make her a great example and inspiration for us all.
Jeremy Dover is a former sports scientist and Pastor
Jeremy Dover's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/jeremy-dover.html