Sunday is supposed to be the Lord's day and despite Super Sunday revolving around a football game, churches align themselves with the Super Bowl to expand their ministries and charitable efforts.
Super Bowls 42, 43, 44 and 45 have been the most watched television programs in history, respectively. Each year breaks the previous years' record and leaders of the Christian faith have taken note to this.
Rather than denounce the event as a distraction from church services, pastors and their churches have used Super Sunday as an outreach campaign.
St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Indianapolis is prepared for more than 150,000 visitors to mingle outside their doors on Feb. 5, according to The Indianapolis Star.
Super Bowl 46 will be in Indianapolis this year at Lucas Oil Stadium, which is walking distance to the church.
Rev. Rick Nagel said he is prepared for the masses and plans to have a good time.
"I feel like when it comes to events like this, you have to make a decision," Nagel said. "Are you going to run and hide, or are you going to just love it and embrace it? We're going to have a good time with it. We see it as a great opportunity for us to open our doors."
Rev. Nagel spoke about the opportunity last fall, foreseeing the possibility placed before the church and the ability parishioners will have to spread their mission and values to a massive audience.
St. John has made plans to add masses and confessional times on Super Sunday. They also have more than 70 volunteers prepared to offer tours of the 175-year-old church, answer questions about Catholicism and serve hot chocolate.
They will also raffle off four Super Bowl tickets, with ninety percent of the proceeds going to St. John's renovation needs.
In 2011, an Illinois church took part in similar Super Sunday activities. According to an article in TribLocal, St. Paul Lutheran Church in Wheaton, Ill. held a Super Bowl of Ministries, Feb. 6, 2011.
While the Green Bay Packers prepared to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers for Super Bowl 45, St. Paul Lutheran Church held ministries like a Bible study called Helping Hands to Bible Studies. Other ministries included Evangelism and Earth Ministry, which created displays of artwork that highlighted their mission and their work.
Lazarus Ministries is an Atlanta-based ministry that will be holding its 10th annual Super Bowl Party on Feb. 5 in a lot where homeless people sleep. They will be showing the game on a big-screen TV, while holding a chili cook-off to feed the homeless.
“The poor usually get the expired and leftover food, but here they get our absolute best at this party,” said Allison Mitchell, Lazarus Ministry Founder.
The winner will win a trophy and a years-worth of bragging rights. Their Super Bowl Chili Cook-off is one of three large events organized to help the community meet the needs of the homeless.