Stadion: International Journal of the History of Sport vol:35 pages:111-122
“Omnes currunt, sed unus accipit bravium”, thus the inscription on the Cardinal’s Cup, or freely translated: “Everybody runs, but only one wins the prize.” This citation refers to a striking passage from Paul’s Letter to the Corinthians (1 Cor 9:24) in which he calls them to excel in the faith as athletes do in the competition. With the promotion of “Catholic sport” and the creation of the Archdiocesan Sports Association in 1907, Count Philippe de Ribaucourt and Canon Francis Dessain wanted to go even a step further. They started with football competition between the boys’ secondary schools of the Archdiocese of Mechelen. The prize was the Cardinal’s Cup awarded by Cardinal Mercier. In 1909, the Archdiocesan Athletic Association began to organize extra-curricular competition for Catholic youth groups, and this was expanded to laborers’ circles in 1920, so the Catholic target group became ever larger. With the incorporation of other sports and associations, with the systematic effort to expand geographically within the various Flemish provinces (with changes of location of both umbrella organizations and daughter federations), and by adapting to the changing social context and legal requirements, a number of changes in name and structure were made. The present name, Koninklijke Vlaamse Voetbalbond [Royal Flemish Football Association], dates from 1998. Although the word “Catholic” has since been deleted from the name, the federation remains Catholic in character.