As I look back over the summer of 2009, one of my favorite endeavors was Frassati Runners, a Catholic running clinic for kids in 3rd-8th grade that my friend, Angela, and I developed.
Anna Marie, Kathleen, and William all ran with Frassati Runners, meeting twice a week for a period of five weeks, and culminating in a fun run with plenty of awards and excitement.
All three of the kids improved their running skills over the course of the clinic. They also learned about Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, a modern day "saint" (still in the process of being canonized) who demonstrated Godly athleticism during his short time on earth. And they took their exhaustion and frustration on the trail and, using sacrifice beads, turned that little bit of suffering into a prayer--keeping track of their offerings with "sacrifice beads."
Frassati Runners was started by two moms, but we were fortunate to have support and on-site assistance from a West Point soldier, a high school track and cross country coach, two champion high school cross country runners, several young runners from the community, and our great friend and running priest--Monsignor Bartylla. These VIP's helped us get the clinic off the ground and made it memorable for the kids.
In addition, our students raised over $1,000 for our local Elizabeth House over the course of their clinic.
The clinic was memorable, exciting, and energizing. It's something that we'll likely pull together again next year.
In this and the next couple posts, you'll see just a few of the many shots from the Frassati Runners running clinic and fun run.