The first edition of Christos Women Football Tournament under the theme "Soul Winning" began at Apollo ground Mini Stadium Tamenglong, Manipur.
As many as 10 women teams are participating in the tournament, which was organised by the Women Society and the Baptist Youth Department of Zeliangrong Baptist Church Tamenglong.
Zeliangrong Baptist Churches Council Northeast India general secretary NH Adui, who attended as chief guest at the inaugural ceremony, hoisted the tournament flag and prayed for the grand success of the tournament.
Speaking at the occasion, NH Adui said that sports rejuvenate the body and mind, resulting in good health and helps to fulfil the spiritual duty of the children of God.
The opening match was played between Kahulong Baptist Church and Tamenglong Baptist Church team.
Christos women football chairman Reverend Johnkim Pame said that the tournament is organised with the aim of bringing together vivacious and avid women of sports guided by the Sspirit of the Gospel.
Pame said through the tournament, the organiser aims to achieve the goal of "Soul Winning", also being the theme of the event.
He explained that biblical translation of soul winning is preaching the word of God, giving someone an opportunity to give their life to Christ and save them from going to hell.
This tournament seeks to win souls and draw people back to the maker. It also aims to fulfil the spiritual duty of all true children of God.
He said that sports is a joy of life, a game and a celebration. It has the ability to strengthen bonds of friendship, foster dialogue and openness among people.
While encouraging all participants, he said sports provide for everyone, an opportunity to cultivate virtue, which provides a gateway for athletes to seek a life of holiness in union with God.
"Sports reaches its fullness in the Gospel of love which we have heard proclaimed through the words of Jesus, which is summed up in the single commandment of Christ's Love".
Love one another and abide in the love of Christ and open up your heart to one another, he said, adding that this is the secret of life and the deepest and most authentic dimension of sports.
Women have been portrayed as models of faith in the teachings of Christ. The role of Women as Soul Winners have been pertinent since the early days of Christianity, he said.
Today, through this tournament, the same role is evoked on all conscious minds to realign to God once again.
Zeliangrong Baptist Church Tamenglong Associate Pastor Reverend Ashing prayed over to open the tournament. Zeliangrong Baptist Church Women Society president Namjianliu lighted the torch.