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Since 2015, men of the parish have been witnessing to Christ’s passion by participating every Holy Saturday in an 8-mile, walking stations of the cross through the city of Reynoldsburg. Organized by the St. Pius X Men’s Ministry, The Armory, Carry the Cross is planned this year for April 15, 2017, from 7:30 AM-12:30 PM.

 

Participation has grown steadily over the past three years, with participants ranging in age from 12 to 70+. Carry the Cross was spearheaded by ministry members Steve Riederer, Tom Vollmer, and John Zacovic, and is styled after a similar program held annually at Clear Creek Metro Park by Wilderness Outreach, a men’s ministry near Lancaster, Ohio, founded by John Bradford.

 

Taking turns and working in teams of two, men bear a 10’ x 5’ cross constructed of 4x4 cedar along an 8-mile loop hike that begins at the JFK Park gazebo (7232 E. Main Street, Reynoldsburg). Stations are marked every 1/2 mile along a path that leads south on the city’s bike trail, west up Livingston Avenue to Blacklick Woods Metro Park, around a 4-mile loop, and back again. The day includes communal prayer and sung hymns, as well as group recitation of the rosary, litanies and/or chaplets, and readings of saint quotations. A station is read at each marked point and men share what is in their hearts before continuing.

 


“It is great to see the men work together in teams to carry the cross, especially the father/son teams,” commented organizer John Zacovic. “In our efforts, we seek to remember and share in some small way the sufferings of Our Lord. A key takeaway from the activity is that we are a fellowship of Christian men coming together to better understand what it means to be Christ’s witness in the world today. By turning off our cell phones and sharing together about our faith, our family, and our Church, we seek to help each other become the men God intends us to be and to grow in faith, hope, and love.”

 

Carry the Cross is open to male parishioners age 18 and over. Those younger than 18 should participate with a parent or guardian. The route is an 8-mile hike with some mild inclines and a small, short hill. A participant should bring water and be fit enough to walk this distance. If you are unable to walk the entire length, there are locations along the route where you can park a car and shorten your hike. Those with electric mobility are welcome, and if you are wheelchair-bound, ministry members can assist you along the route.

 

To learn more about Carry the Cross, the St. Pius X Men’s Ministry, The Armory, or to contact John Zacovic with questions, please visit:

http://spxreynoldsburg.com/mens-ministry.html