'The Final Five' Win Big, Give Glory to God
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The U.S Women's gymnastics team may be small, but their near flawless Olympic performance paid off big.
"The Final Five" as they've nicknamed themselves, edged out Russia and China by a few tenths of a point, leading the team to victory.
MORE: Olympic Profiles in Faith
Through the finals Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman, Madison Kocian, Laurie Hernandez and Simone Biles were focused and confident despite the pressure.
These athletes say it is their faith that they rely on in such high-stakes moments.
"I take my Bible with me, sometimes two of them, when I travel...I always pray at every competition, when the judge's hand goes up I am praying, and there are little Scriptures I like to quote," said Douglas in her memoir "Grace, Gold and Glory: My Leap of Faith."
Biles leans on her Catholic faith before every big competition.
God put you there.— Simone Biles (@Simone_Biles) February 18, 2016
be confident. be humble.
if you're praying about it— Simone Biles (@Simone_Biles) April 2, 2016
God is working on it
16-year-old Hernandez says God is always first in her life and she expresses that unwavering faith daily on Twitter.
August 9, 2016
Glory to God— Laurie Hernandez ➶ (@lzhernandez02) June 25, 2016
— Laurie Hernandez ➶ (@lzhernandez02) March 28, 2016
Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. pic.twitter.com/EjheMUspz7
Hernandez told Athletes in Action that prayer often quells the pressure she feels before a performance.
"Usually, before I salute the judge I'm able to just grab the event and I pray on it and that really grounds me. For some reason, once I do that, I am able to think clearly and I'm able to calm down right before I compete," she said.
Madison Koucian is not shy about her faith either. She told NBC that she attends church every week and even when she travels to a different country to she tries to attend a service.
Faith is a big part of my life," she said.
Koucian tweets about her faith as well:
❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/JeaWE4CSu4— Madison Kocian (@MadisonKocian) May 11, 2016
Dear God, I wanna take a minute, not to ask for anything from you. But simply to say thank you, for all I have.— Life (@lnspiredLife) October 16, 2015
Aly Raisman proudly proclaims her Jewish heritage. Raisman won the gold in the 2012 Olympics in London after performing to "Hava Nagila". She later informed reporters that it was the 40th anniversary of the massacre of 11 Israeli's at the 1972 Munich games.
Raisman and Biles will be the only two competitors who will move on to the all-around competition scheduled Thursday.
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