Posted by: Karen (Betty Bear) | February 6, 2012

s(o)uper bowl

Happiness reigned in our house last night. Husband is a life-long NY Giants fan and he has diligently trained up the kids to follow in his footsteps. Actually almost all of my extended family are Giants fans and sports fans in general. I would be the outlier. I watch and cheer if I’m around, but if I were alone? I doubt I’d ever turn on the television for sports. Except the Olympics. I love watching the Olympics. Go figure.

Yesterday was not just the Super Bowl, it was also the day for the Souper Bowl of Caring. Once upon a time, about 20 years ago, a youth minister named Brad Smith* made a prayer that went like this:Ā “Lord, even as we enjoy the Super Bowl football game, help us be mindful of those who are without a bowl of soup to eat.” This started a small group to have a collection on Super Bowl Sunday of canned goods and $1 for the local food pantry. Last year,across the nation: 3,233 groups generated $5,359,684 in cash and food items for local charities. The way it is set up is that the individual groups do a collection on Super Bowl Sunday and donate the food items to their local food pantry and the money to whichever local charity they choose. Then they report the amount to the organization. Mostly it is done by churches, but any group that cares about helping those in need can participate.

Our church has our junior high group do this. They talked it over and decided to donate the money collected to HOPS, which is a program that connects mentally handicapped kids with athletes of their own age so that they can play sports. I helped them get set up with big soup pots (found in most church kitchens!) at each of the entrances to the church and made sure they were manning the soup pots. After the service we collected them all and counted up the items and the money collected. We got over 200 items for the food pantry and $266 for HOPS.

So next year, when your team isn’t in the Super Bowl, or you don’t care about football and wish everyone would just get over it, maybe you could find a group to join in for the Souper Bowl instead.


*Brad Smith was actually the minister at my parent’s church and he confirmed me and baptized my babies. He carefully and thoughtfully worked with the husband and me so that husband who is Jewish could participate comfortably. He’s a sweetheart. AND he named his kids the same names as mine. Except he had one more than me.



  1. oh, I love this idea. We may have to adopt it here. i will google and find out more.

    • Just click on the link, it should take you to the organization’s home page and you can read about it there.

  2. This is the first I’ve heard about it! Must bring it to the attention of my church!

  3. Yay!! šŸ˜€

  4. I missed this (Dan’s weekend blah blah blah) but I had to chime in. What a beautiful idea! If I had a group I’d share it with them, oh wait, hell, I DO have a group. I’ll link to it tomorrow or the next day if that’s okay with you.

  5. […] Karen B posted it …. here.Ā  And in light of how I was feeling yesterday (with remnants of it still lingering today) I […]

  6. I love this tradition. Very nice.

    • It’s a good one. I like that it’s local and you know what’s happening to your contribution.

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