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Soccer player Jaelene Hinkle refused to play for US national team because of LGBT Pride shirt

Lydia Smith June 1, 2018

HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 09: Crystal Dunn #19 of the Washington Spirit battles for the ball with Jaelene Hinkle #15 of the Western New York Flash during the first half of the 2016 NWSL Championship at BBVA Compass Stadium on October 9, 2016 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

A Christian soccer player has said she refused to play for the US national team because she would have had to wear a LGBT pride shirt.

The 25-year-old, who plays for North Carolina Courage, was chosen to play in several matches last year but turned the offer down over the rainbow kit.

“I felt so convicted in my spirit, that it was not my job to wear this jersey,” she said in an interview posted on the The 700 Club website.

“And I gave myself three days to just seek and pray and determine what he was asking me to do in this situation.”

Hinkle said she was “essentially giving up the one dream little girls dream about their whole lives.”

The limited edition LGBT uniform
(USA Soccer)

“It was very disappointing,” she added. “I think that’s where the peace trumps the disappointment, because I knew in my spirit that I was doing the right thing.

“I knew I was being obedient, and just because you’re obedient doesn’t make it easy.”

Last year, the US women’s and men’s national teams wore rainbow kit to support LGBT Pride month.

It was part of an initiative between US Soccer and You Can Play, an organisation whose aim is to tackle homophobia and transphobia and ensure equality for all athletes, coaches and fans.

The jerseys were auctioned off after the matches.

(Getty)

“I don’t question [God’s] goodness,” Hinkle added.

“Like, I know he’s good, I know he’s faithful. And if I never get a national team call-up again, then maybe that’s just part of his plan, that’s okay.

“And maybe this is why you were meant to play soccer, just to show other believers to be obedient.”

Her decision was supported by the manager of her club, Paul Riley.

“She’s got a good heart, and she battled through the game. It’s not an easy thing for her,” Riley said.

“I give her a lot of credit. Whatever her beliefs are, whatever she believes in, that’s her. It doesn’t affect the team.”

 

Hinkle has previously made her views on LGBT rights public.

After the decision to legalise same-sex marriage in the US, she tweeted: “This world is falling farther and farther away from God… All that can be done by believers is to continue to pray.”

More: football, Jaelene Hinkle, soccer, sport, US

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