Prince Harry quotes Rumi: ‘The wound is the place where the light enters you’

Prince Harry’s final day at the Invictus Games was a busy one. He announced the location for Invictus 2025, he greeted King Willem-Alexander and they attended the wheelchair basketball final, and Harry made an incredibly moving speech at the closing ceremony for the games. He was also passing out medals, spending time with the athletes, shedding some tears and generally being pitch-perfect. At the closing ceremony, Harry quoted Rumi: “the wound is the place where the light enters you.” That’s what Harry said, although others translate the quote as “the wound is the place where the light gets in.” Same difference. It’s still moving as hell:

— Misan Harriman (@misanharriman) April 22, 2022

As for the 2025 Games, as I said, they will be held in Vancouver and Whistler, British Columbia. The 2025 games will be the first “winter hybrid” games in Invictus’s history, meaning more sports will be added and those sports will be more wintery. From IG Foundation:

“As Invictus continues to adapt and evolve, I am extremely excited to announce that the Invictus Games Foundation has selected Canada to host the first-ever Winter Hybrid Games in 2025,” said Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex. “The Invictus Games Vancouver-Whistler 2025 will offer a global platform to expand the range and profile of winter adaptive sports. With deep respect, I’m also pleased to share that the Games in Canada will be held in partnership with the First Nations, in the spirit of truth and reconciliation with indigenous communities.”

The Invictus Games 2025 will bring together over 500 competitors from 20 nations to compete in adaptive sports, including the new winter sports: Alpine Skiing, Nordic Skiing, Skeleton, and Wheelchair Curling, in addition to the core Invictus Games sports of indoor rowing, sitting volleyball, swimming, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair basketball. Vancouver and Whistler were selected as the host cities by the Invictus Games Foundation following a competitive bid process.

The Invictus Games 2025 will be held on the traditional territories of the x ʷ məθ kʷə y əm (Musqueam), S ḵwxw ú7mesh (Squamish), St ó:lō and S ə l ílw ətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, Skalulmecw L íl wat ̓ Nation and the G élpcal L ílwat Nation. The Invictus Games 2025 are working closely to ensure they respond to Canada’s Truth & Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action, and ensure Indigenous protocols are respected in all aspects of the Games.

Events will be held across Vancouver and Whistler in February 2025. True Patriot Love Foundation has worked closely with governments at all levels in preparing the bid and is delighted to have the full support and engagement of the Government of Canada, Government of British Columbia and the municipalities of Vancouver and Whistler.

[From Invictus Games Foundation]

So, not only is Harry doing this incredible event for veterans, he’s also growing the event to be more inclusive of different sports (thus, giving countries the ability to send more athletes), and he’s using Invictus to highlight Canada’s Indigenous people and their land. Thus increasing respectful (dare I say “woke”) tourism. Completely brilliant. Incidentally, I saw that there was some confusion about the timing in between games – from what I can tell, the games are ideally spaced out every fifteen-to-eighteen months. They got backed up because of the pandemic, but they’re back to normal spacing now. Invictus Dusseldorf will be in September 2023 (roughly 17 months from now), then Vancouver in February 2025, roughly 17 months later. Make no mistake, Invictus Netherlands was a HUGE success. Dusseldorf will be too.

Photos courtesy of Instar.

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