KATIE LEDECKY, OLYMPIAN GOLD MEDALIST AND WORLD CHAMPION:
My Catholic faith helps me put things in perspective. I pray the “Hail Mary” before any race.
Katie Ledecky, Rio 2016 Olympic gold medalist in the 200m and 400m freestyle, openly stated in an interview with Catholic Standard on July 28, 2016 that her Catholic faith is a source of strength in her life.
Aside from winning the two abovementioned events, Ledecky is at present the world record holder in the 400, 800 and 1500-meter freestyles; the American record holder in the 500, 1000 and 1650-yard freestyles; and, the first swimmer in history to win the 200, 400, 800, and 1500-meter freestyles in a single world championship in 2015.
During the interview with Catholic Standard, she said:
“My Catholic faith is very important to me. It always has been and it always will be. It is part of who I am and I feel comfortable practicing my faith. It helps me put things in perspective.”
“I do say a prayer – or two – before any race. The Hail Mary is a beautiful prayer and I find that it calms me.”
“I attended Catholic schools from pre-K through high school. I attended Little Flower School in Bethesda through 8th grade and then Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart for high school I received an excellent, faith-filled education at both schools. Having the opportunity to attend academically rigorous schools has facilitated my interest in the world and in serving others, and has enriched my life so that it is not solely focused on my swimming and athletics. Nevertheless, going to these schools was important to my swimming – my Catholic schools challenged me, they broadened my perspective and they allowed me to use my mind in ways that take me beyond just thinking about swim practices, swim meets and sports.”
Dear friends, let us thank God for Katie’s simple yet courageous testimony of her Catholic faith which is especially important in this secularized world where religion is advertently kept private perhaps out of shame or human respect.
Congratulations Katie! You are such a good example to many people. Keep it up and
good luck to your 800m freestyle competition!
Fr. Rolly Arjonillo, priest of Opus Dei.