1896 - PRESENT

The Olympic games are an international sport festival which are held every four years. This festivals first began in ancient Greece but were abolished in the early Christian era. The games were revived in 1896 and have been staged since then every four years. One of the differences between the modern games and those of ancient times is that the participants were all Greek, whereas today the games include athletes from all over the world.

In 1936, for the first time in modern Olympic history, the sacred Olympic flame is carried to Berlin, Germany where the 11th Olympiad is to take place. The golden rays of the sun reflect off a mirror and onto a torch from Olympia, Elis, Greece. Runners, through a relay transport the flame to Germany. The last runner, carrying the torch, runs into the stadium at the time of the opening Olympic ceremony and lights the Olympic torch which is to burn during the games until it is extinguished during the closing ceremony.

Since then, it has been traditional to officially begin the games after the Olympic flame has been brought to the stadium of the hosting country. Runners from each country are selected to participate in this relay. The flame symbolizes the endeavor for perfection, the struggle for victory, and peace throughout all countries of the world.

Today there is discussion and suggestions that the Olympic games be held every four years in Greece. This way the sacred flame does not have to travel such distances to foreign lands, to bring its significance to mankind. Instead, people ALL over the world to come to the sacred land of Olympia and that everyone can light the flame of UNITY and PEACE.

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For comments or suggestions please write to: Angie Tzouvelakos