Glenmary comes in first at Flying Pig
By John Stegeman
CINCINNATI — Four runners affiliated with the Fairfield-based Glenmary Home Missioners joined forces Sunday to win the City Dash 4-Person open relay event at the Flying Pig Marathon, raising awareness and funds for Glenmary’s vocation efforts in the process.
Creative development ideas surrounding the race, including a Facebook fundraiser and a special dinner, brought in more than $3,000 for Glenmary’s ongoing efforts to seek men called to missionary priesthood and brotherhood.
Josiah Kimani, Antonio Marchi, Rachel Thome and Wilmar Zabala completed the 26.2 mile course in 3:06:29, coming in first of 303 teams in their division. Josiah and Antonio are Glenmary men in formation, both preparing to be Glenmary brothers. Rachel works in Glenmary’s mission education and ministry office and Wilmar is Glenmary’s vocations counselor.
“Last year I ran the half-marathon at the Flying Pig and saw how huge an event it was,” Zabala said. “Right then I thought it would be a great idea to have a relay team and run it to bring awareness to Glenmary’s ministry in rural America since it’s not known to many. I also thought of a relay team because I know we have talented Glenmary students and seminarians who love running. I want to acknowledge and uplift their athletic abilities.”
Many organizations use the Flying Pig as a fundraiser and awareness tool. In past years, the Now in its 20th year, the event has grown to a multi-day affair with nearly 40,000 participants. Glenmary graphic designer Cassie Magnotta designed special shirts for Team Glenmary to wear while running and planned the pre-race Mass and dinner the night before.
The runners did the rest.
“One benefit of participating in the Flying Pig is certainly the visibility,” Wilmar said. “Most importantly, by having the two men in formation on the team, I hope to show and remind young people who may be thinking about the priesthood or religious life that they don’t have to give up their athletic abilities when they say yes to God’s calling. I’ve been praying that one or two of the many young people who saw and read our running t-shirt would be inspired to check out our website, Glenmary.org!”
Glenmary’s headquarters is located in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, and its priests and brothers are known for their service to the U.S. home missions, primarily Appalachia and the rural south. Glenmary’s relay team at the Flying Pig, though, had an international flair. Thome is from the U.S., Kimani is from Kenya, Marchi is Argentinian and Zabala is from the Phillipines. For more information on the Glenmary’s, click on Glenmary Home Missioners