"Walk to Ireland" in Memory of Father Larry
If you exercise or are trying to get in the habit of it, I have good news for you! You don’t have to be in the gym lifting weights or doing an obsessive amount of cardio. All you need to do is walk! Walking uses nearly 200 muscles, reduces stress, gives you more energy, and helps tone muscles.
The University of Indianapolis Nursing Students, Holy Cross Health Ministries, and St. Francis Hospital started a health initiative called “Walk to Ireland.” The program not only focuses on improving health and spirituality, but it also commemorates Father Larry Voelker. Father Larry was “a priest, counselor, friend, and a person who understood the message of social justice and how we must be God’s presence to His people living in physical and spiritual poverty."
“Walk to Ireland” is similar to NEHM’s “Walk to Anywhere”, except instead of walking the mileage that Mary and Joseph walked to Bethlehem, you will walk to Ireland! I bet you’re wondering, why Ireland? Well, Father Larry was of Irish decent and he loved the openness of the county. Also, in the 1830’s German and Irish immigrants founded the first Holy Cross Church in Indianapolis.
Check out this link to see how the students personalized the walk to honor Father Larry. It's a wonderful way to offer add some special meaning to a wellness program. Why not use NEHM's own Walk to Anywhere program and give it a personal touch for your parish?
If you don't like to walk, then there are other activity points that can be earned doing other things. Initiatives like “Walk to Ireland” give people a challenge that focuses on improving their spirituality and health with the support of others. So go ahead, and take that first step to a better you!
Brooke Curtis is currently a sophomore attending DePauw University with an intended biology major. She is serving as an intern for NEHM in January 2011.