I would like to start off by thanking you for your support and participation, as we begin to embark on this journey. As a member of this Penya this is the start of your affiliation to GS Blaugrana, the official FC Barcelona supporters group of New Jersey. We as the founding group would like to express our sincerest gratitude for taking the first step to joining this Mission.
Our commitment to this supporters club, not only stems from our unquestionable love for the club but from our desire to share with the world the core values and passion that it means to be a member of this club. As some of you may already know, those values are Respect, Effort, Ambition, Teamwork, and Humility. These are values that every member associated with the club not only embraces but effortlessly incorporates into their everyday living. It is these values that set us apart from all other clubs across the world.
As a member of this Penya, we want everyone to embody the spirit of the club. Respecting those around you, working hard to achieve your goals, helping those who may not be as fortunate, and performing these acts without expecting anything in return are the main principles we believe in.
The great John Wooden once said:
″The true test of a man's character is what he does when no one is watching″
Thank you once again for joining us today and Visca Barça!
Respect for others is one of the basic requirements of democratic life and the capacity to live in society. It affects the individual and has both a social and a collective dimension. Respect is a fundamental part of the sport, for sport generates situations of tension that have to be resolved almost instantaneously. There is, therefore, a need, above rules and standards, for this value to be present in order to guarantee cordial and correct interrelations between people. In sport, respect is needed in similar situations to those where it is demanded in wider society, but the intensity of the moment implies that the presence or absence of respect can be very obvious and can affect the development of the situation or event.
There are many social models that avoid effort and advocate instead of luck, opportunism and immediate triumph. However, the effort is a value that can take us to unthinkable heights and lead us to achieve targets and objectives that may at other times appear distant or inaccessible. Dedication, rigor, constancy, sacrifice, and perseverance all bear fruit, while luck and the search for a quick win are often fleeting and momentary. Note that at school, teachers have for a long time have been promoting a culture of effort as the vehicle for academic development and personal achievement, and this helps to construct new social models.
Ambition is the desire to achieve the maximum performance and do things not only well but also as well as is feasibly possible and to improve every day. This value is applicable both to individuals and to groups. It involves the use of a web of values as varied as excellence, patience, discipline, order, motivation, and responsibility. Indeed, ambition invokes and requires a broad system of values and, in turn, is related to a job being done well, effort and rigor. Regarding targets, ambition is probably the surest way of achieving them, for it is the impulse to grow.
Teamwork implies that the subject forms part of a group and that, as a member of the same, becomes an active element that acts on behalf of the whole (sometimes even to the determination of their own individuality). There are undeniable benefits of knowing that you are part of a team and this requires the learning and accentuation of many other values.
Often when athletes, and people in general, achieve the goals they have set themselves, they start feeling superior in physical, moral, economic and other terms, and this leads them to forget certain values that have in all probability helped them to achieve those very goals: effort, perseverance, self-control, etc. We are all aware of how FC Barcelona has dealt with its victories of recent years, and how it has always shown humility (and also such values as effort, rigor, responsibility, and others) to win respect in its field, and among its opponents, and generally everyone. Humility probably consists of knowing how to be clear about one’s values, and to maintain them and defend them even in situations where you are clearly superior and more successful.