This Saturday, March 9 was the second week-end of training for the 2013 Flying Pig Marathon, for City Gospel Mission's Step Forward team. The race itself is on May 4 and 5 but the inspiration and momentum is unmistakable. When the training kicked off on Saturday, March 2, 105 people joined the men of the Exodus Program and the women of Having the Courage to Change to inaugurate this year's challenge. This past Saturday, there were 175 participants – and it is only the second week-end.
It will be the fifth year that the men and women of City Gospel Mission's recovery programs are participating in this Cincinnati's premier marathon. They are not alone, though, and the number of supporters continues to rise.
Although participating in the Flying Pig Marathon does bring in some revenue for City Gospel Mission, the emphasis goes beyond that. For those in recovery it provides the opportunity to do something positive for oneself, after years of destructive behaviors. It is not only doing something positive, but also beginning a task and completing it – something that many were unable to do while in addictions.
In addition – and certainly, most importantly – City Gospel Mission's programs are spiritually and Christ-centered. Participation in the Flying Pig Marathon, therefore, is one way of witnessing not so much to what we can do but what God can do in us, including recovery from addictions.
In this witnessing, the men and women of the Exodus and Having the Courage to Change are joined by City Gospel Mission staff, volunteers, supporters, friends and family. What could be more inspiring than a mother practicing with her son or daughter, or a sister who devotes her time to show support and love for her brother who is trying to break away from the bondage that alienated them? That has been the spirit of the Step Forward team in the past four years and it is even stronger this fifth year.
This Saturday, Alison Delgado, winner of 2005 Flying Pig Marathon, women's division, shared her inspiring and unbelievable comeback after an accident that almost took her life. Yes, Step Forward tells stories of possibilities even in the midst of formidable odds.