If priests can pedal 275 miles, diocese’s Catholic men can walk for one Saturday

As this issue of The Catholic Post documents in stories and photos, three priests of the Diocese of Peoria and a permanent deacon just rode their bikes for 275 miles across the Diocese of Peoria to inspire prayers for vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life.

In just its second year, Priests Pedaling for Prayers is already a diocesan sensation — as anyone who was part of the robust welcomes at Catholic schools along their route can attest.

Another diocesan sensation is set to take place for its 15th consecutive year this Saturday morning, April 28. Its formal title is “A Call to Catholic Men of Faith,” but most know it as the Men’s March and Mass. Every year since 2004, hundreds of Catholic men from across the Diocese of Peoria have gathered at the Peoria riverfront on a Saturday morning in spring for a brief talk. They then walk to St. Mary’s Cathedral for a Mass with Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, followed by a fellowship lunch.

And so we issue a challenge to every Catholic man of the Diocese of Peoria: If Father Adam Cesarek, Father Tom Otto, Father Michael Pica, and Deacon Matt Levy can ride their bicycles for 275 miles — through snow, rain, and cold — to encourage prayer for vocations, can you spare a Saturday morning to walk one mile and stand with your bishop in defense of your Catholic faith, your family, and the priesthood?

We hope you answer “yes,” and that you bring a friend, a son, or a grandson. It all starts at 8:30 a.m. outside the Gateway Building in downtown Peoria. — Thomas J. Dermody

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