Sydney priest Fr Adam Crouch says he is one of the luckiest people around, being able to live out his two passions – faith and football. Source: Sydney Archdiocese.
An assistant priest at Penshurst parish, Fr Crouch is also an assistant coach at the QBE Sydney Swans Academy.
A handy midfielder in his day for Port Adelaide, Fr Crouch said having a connection through footy gives him a real advantage when dealing with not only young skills but young souls.
“They say if you love what you do you never work a day in your life and that certainly applies to me,” he said.
“Being a priest is my number one priority … but I must admit footy does come a very close second.
“Being able to connect with young people on the footy field opens the door to conversations about faith.
“And quite often it’s not me who instigates it, young people are curious and I think they feel they can talk to me about anything, which helps with my ministry enormously.”
Many of the up-and-coming young players Fr Crouch coaches are from Catholic schools and one he has struck a special bond with is Matt Kannan.
The Year 12 student from the St Mary’s Cathedral College is not only in the training squad, but also his parish.
“He is so inspiring and helps me a lot whether it’s with footy or my faith,” he said.
“Penshurst is very lucky to have him and so are the young kids at the Swans. I know he makes the fellas think about their behaviour when he’s around and hopefully more importantly when he’s not.”
Fr Adam’s brother Jared, a former Swans premiership player, said his brother not only brings a wealth of footy knowledge but also strong values which the club is trying to instil.
Priest soars with the Swans (Sydney Archdiocese)