The Nation's Prayer

One tournament. 24 slogans.

I’ve reviewed and rated the team slogans for Euro 2016 on Creative Review. You can read it all here.

It’s a follow-up to a similar review I did for the 2014 World Cup, where Ivory Coast’s ‘Elephants Charging Towards Brazil!’ was the clear winner. The slogans aren’t quite up to that mark, but then few slogans are.

I’ve decided not to do another Nation’s Prayer this time round, but for the record ‘Harry be thy Kane’ would have been a good second line.

Hail Jodie

By popular demand*, we have created a variation of The Nation’s Prayer in honour of the England women’s squad who have reached the semi-finals of the World Cup in Canada (they will play Japan on Wednesday night).

Rather than rewriting the Lord’s Prayer as with previous versions, this one takes the Hail Mary as its starting point. Jodie Taylor takes the lead thanks to her crucial goal in the quarter final, while captain Steph Houghton plays the holding role at the end.

Please feel free to download, print out and share in advance of the match, not that it’s done any good in the past. We may have to produce the full rosary set at some point, with footballs for beads. Or maybe not. (By the way, we are aware some Christians may not like the prayers being used this way – we appreciate your tolerance of what is intended as a good-humoured project.)

See previous posts for more on the back story to The Nation’s Prayer.


* one person mentioned it on Twitter (thanks @garham)

Lead us not into uncredited appropriation

This year’s version of the Nation’s Prayer (see last post) must be the least successful yet given England’s performance. Someone in Costa Rica must have written a very strong version.

Nevertheless, the prayer had an interesting life, in a story that ended with a Sun journalist reading the prayer out (uncredited) to a congregation of England fans beneath the statue of Christ the Redeemer overlooking Rio. There’s an entertaining film of it here but I can’t share it because it’s behind their paywall.

I’ve written the whole story up in this post on Creative Review, touching on some of the wider issues it raises about popular culture and attribution.

One thing I forgot to mention was the reviews the prayer received after it ‘went viral’ via a couple of dodgy accounts on Twitter:

Properly warms the heart.

Thanks to everyone who ordered the prayer card (sorry, no refunds) and shared it on Twitter or elsewhere. Thanks also to Creative Reviewfor spotting that The Sun had used it, to Stig Abell at The Sun for putting it right and making a donation to Street League, and to Tim Rich of 66000milesperhour.com for some helpful advice along the way.

We may return for Euro 2016, if England make it.

Top image copyright 2012 News Group Newspapers Ltd