Many of us are probably watching the 31st summer Olympic games.  I know I have. I just like to have it on to marvel at the amazing athleticism and competition on display.
According to the Olympic Charter: "Olympism is a philosophy of life, exalting and combining in a balanced whole the qualities of body, will and mind. Blending sport with culture and education, Olympism seeks to create a way of life base on the joy found in effort, the educational value of good example and respect for universal fundamental ethical principles. The goal of the Olympic Movement is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world by educating youth through sport practiced without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play.
As you already know about me, I like looking for connections between things.
Well, One of the objects of Rotary is to "encourage and foster:"
       "The advancement of international understanding, goodwill, and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional persons united in the ideal of service."
I was interested to read about a gathering in CO Springs just this past April where, and I quote,
"...more than 50 representatives from the Rotary Peace Centers and members of the U.S. Olympic Committee were treated to a surprise pre-dinner performance by the U.S. men's Olympic gymnastics team.
'They showcased their prowess in tumbling, the high bar, and the pommel horse. It was stunning!' says Rotary International Director Jennifer Jones, who served as the emcee for the April event at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.
Sponsored by The Rotary Foundation, 1972 Olympic decathlon competitor Barry King, and the Rotary Club of Fort Collins, Colorado, the event was aimed at promoting donor support for the Rotary Peace Centers Major Gifts Initiative.
Given their shared emphasis on fostering peace and goodwill, the two organizations have joined forces in the past. In fact, their relationship dates back at least to the 1932 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, when the Rotary Club of Los Angeles hosted members of the International Olympic Committee and Olympic athletes. 'Here the two great international organizations whose efforts are ever for peace met in international fellowship,' The Rotarian magazine noted in its October 1932 issue. And their vital work continues.
Under the Rotary Peace Centers program, up to 100 peace fellows pursue master's degree or professional development certificate in fields related to peace and security at one of the program's partner universities."
I think it's especially important for us as Rotarians to view the highly publicized challenges that Rio De Janero has contended with to host the Olympic games through the eyes of our special mission to serve humanity: 
The City and the Country of Brazil has suffered a great deal in recent years. They are in the midst of the worst recession in their history. We've all heard about the Zika outbreak; the water pollution; the high crime rate, high unemployment and inflation as well as the question that seems to beset many second world cities that host the games as to whether the country's investment may deepen its financial problems.  
Thankfully, we can be proud to belong to an organization that acts when it sees challenges such as those facing the people of Rio and that always looks for opportunities to find connections with organizations that share its ideals and its mission to serve.
As we go forward this week, let us be mindful of new challenges facing the people in our community of Cheyenne and look for new opportunities to serve.     -Milward Simpson, 2016-17 Club President