According to a report by CNN, on Thursday, the Vatican launched its official athletics team, a track team of up to 60 athletes, including nuns, priests, Swiss Guards, museum workers, carpenters and maintenance workers, all with the blessing of the Italian Olympic Committee, otherwise known as CONI. Hailed as a "historic moment" by Vatican press office director Alessandro Gisotti, the team's first race takes place in nine days. CNN reports that the support of CONI allows the Vatican team to become a member of international sports federations. The team's president, Monsignor Melchor Jose Sanchez de Toca y Alameda, said, "The dream that we have often had is to see the Holy See flag among the delegations at the opening of the Olympic Games."

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