Blessing of the runners: Boston Marathon

image
Scheduled on the third Monday of April (Patriots’ Day), the Boston Marathon comes around like clockwork each year. But this year is different. Coinciding with a late Easter when families tend to travel and bouncing back from last year’s tragic bombing, the Boston Marathon could see an unprecedented near- million spectators cheering on the 36,000 runners as everyone pulls together to make this a Boston Strong race to remember. Churches — at least those we saw near the center of the marathon activities — posted the times of a special Easter event: the blessing of the runners. So, for Easter 2014, we joined Jim Miller, our friend who is running his 100th marathon, at St. Anthony’s Shrine on Arch Street.
image

It was near the end of the service that the friar asked the runners attending the service to stand. And then, with passion and concern for those accepting the challenge of the Boston Marathon, he read the following:

A Runner’s Blessing

Run well, my friends.

You stand at the starting line.

You have chosen your race, and the miles await your stamina.

Soon the thunder of thousands of footfalls will surge . . .

A drumbeat of determination.

The starter’s whistle releases you into the chase . . .

the chase of countless individual commitments . . .

collected in common pursuit.

May you rejoice in the fellowship of your companions.

Run well, my friends.

May your minds find focus.

May your heart overflow with joy.

May angel wings make fleet your feet.

May the winds of the sublime billow your lungs.

And may the Lord protect and guide you to the finish line.

In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Amen.

Happy Easter 2014

4 thoughts on “Blessing of the runners: Boston Marathon

  1. Fr. John Legerski

    Rusha-Thank you for this wonderful post. Our Catholic elementary school is having a jog-a-thon this Friday, and I’m going to adapt the friar’s blessing for them at the mass beforehand. I’ll be sure to tell the kids where the blessing comes from and ask them to remember the Boston runners in their prayers. So, from Boise to Boston, thanks for the inspiration!

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      So very glad you found this blessing on the web. I’m excited that your elementary school is having a jog-a-thon; who knows which student just might turn into a marathoner from this early start. Best wishes to you as you continue to lead young people. Will be thinking of you on Friday.

It makes our day to hear from you.