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Former Colombian soccer player keeps promise to Pope Francis

2015-03-29

Last September, during the first Interfaith Game for Peace, former professional soccer player Ivan Cordoba made a promise to Pope Francis. He said he would give the Pope a very special jersey. And he kept his word.

IVÁN RAMIRO CÓRDOBA
Former Inter de Milan player
"It was a promise made to the Pope. I wanted to give him my San Lorenzo jersey from when I was there in '98 and '99. I also gave him an invitation to the dinner my foundation is having to celebrate its ten year anniversary. It will be on May 18th in Milan.”

The player raises money for children in the poorest areas of Colombia with his foundation, which is called "Colombia, te quiere ver.” The name translates to "Colombia wants to see you.

IVÁN RAMIRO CÓRDOBA
Former Inter Milan player
"My wife and I are people who have had very good opportunities in life and we want to give back what we have received. Through our foundation, we want to give opportunities and practical help to those who are weakest in Colombia: children and the elderly.”

His foundation is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary, and he plans to bring together several of soccer's biggest stars for a fundraiser. He is convinced that the sport is an important tool to help build peace. 

IVÁN RAMIRO CÓRDOBA
Former Inter Milan player
"It is an instrument of joy and peace. It makes you and other people feel good and have fun. You also learn because it requires discipline and you have to have responsibility.  So it is an educational tool. And you must live this way. And one who doesn't see it that way is probably not meant to play.”

Iván Ramiro admitted that he was speechless during his meeting with the Pope. Besides being a  philanthropist and a good soccer player, he's also a man who keeps his word.


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