Pope Francis, the coolest surfer of the Catholic Church

May 30, 2016 | Surfing
Pope Francis: he is ready to hit the surf | Photo: L'Osservatore Romano

Pope Francis is officially a surfer. Two surf activists have offered a surfboard to the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in an event held in the Vatican Synod Hall.

Sean Brody and Daniel Hopkins, global surf travelers and founders of the Kwepunha Surf Retreat, were invited to speak at the end of the World Congress of Pontifical Foundation Scholas Occurrentes Pontifical.

Pope Francis was the main invitee, so Brody and Hopkins decided to gift him with a brand-new surfboard.

The white and light-blue plank has the Scholas Occurrentes logo.

"Surfing is one of the most amazing bridges for coastal communities around the world. I have to thank you," Daniel Hopkins told Pope Francis.

"Ebola was an incredibly challenging time for us and for Liberia, and your promotion of not falling into fear and choosing to love over fear is something that really resonates with the sport of surfing because once the epidemic ended, surfers were the first people to travel back there as tourists."

Surf People

The Pontifical Foundation Scholas Occurrentes Pontifical aims to integrate poor communities from different cultures and religions via arts, sports, and technology.

The organization works in 82 countries.

Salma Hayek, George Clooney, and Richard Gere are ambassadors for one of the foundation's art projects.

"In Liberia, we've been able to keep the kids out of trouble, keeping them in school, and used the sport of surfing as one big family," added Sean Brody.

"In the surfing world, we have a sign for peace [Shaka Sign]. There are two types of people in the world: people who surf and people who want to surf."

"And we would like to invite everyone to join us, to join our tribe and family."

Initially, Pope Francis thought the surfboard was not for him, but after exchanging a few words with the activists, he smiled and grabbed the surfcraft.

Jorge Bergoglio is now certainly the coolest Bishop of Rome of all time. Francis would go.

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