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Priests’ ride across the diocese an adventure, like a life in God’s plan

The Priests Pedaling for Prayers and their companions prepare to start their 350-mile journey across the Diocese of Peoria on Sept. 30. Dipping their back tires into the Mississippi River are (from left) Axel Jimenez, Father Michael Pica, Deacon Matt Levy, Father Tom Otto, Father Adam Cesarek, Brother Benedict, CSJ, Chris Hebel, and Dr. Michael Cruz. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

As they dipped the rear tires of their bicycles into the Mississippi River at Schuler’s Shady Grove Boat Ramp in Rapids City on Sept. 30, Father Tom Otto, Father Adam Cesarek and Father Michael Pica had no idea what would happen in the 350 miles they would travel before getting to the Indiana state line […]

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Pedaling priests to again ride across diocese for vocation awareness, prayers

Members of the track team from Holy Cross School in Mendota ran with Father Michael Pica, Father Tom Otto, Father Adam Cesarek and Deacon Matt Levy as they completed last year's Priests Pedaling for Prayers ride across the Diocese of Peoria. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

As the Priests Pedaling for Prayers prepare to embark on their third bike ride across the Diocese of Peoria to raise awareness of and prayers for vocations, they’re looking to Venerable Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen for inspiration and support. The jerseys for the 2019 ride, which begins in Rapids City on Sept. 30 and ends […]

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Priests Pedaling for Prayers reach finish line, recall blessings of 275-mile trek

Members of the track team from Holy Cross School in Mendota ran with Father Michael Pica, Father Tom Otto, Father Adam Cesarek and Deacon Matt Levy as they completed last year's Priests Pedaling for Prayers ride across the Diocese of Peoria. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

After riding through snow, wind and rain for much of the first three days, the Priests Pedaling for Prayers started to pick up some sunshine on the fourth day of their 275-mile journey and finished strong on “a perfect day” in Mendota on April 20. That seemed appropriate in the middle of the Easter Season, […]

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‘Priests Pedaling for Prayers’ set to ride through diocese again April 16-20

A scene from the first leg of "Priests Pedaling for Prayers" last April shows (from left) Father Michael Pica, Father Tom Otto and Father Adam Cesarek tackling one of the major hills they encountered in central Illinois. They are preparing to ride again April 16-20, this time traveling from Nauvoo to Mendota. (The Catholic Post file photo/Jennifer Willems)

Here they go again. Three young priests of the Diocese of Peoria are preparing to climb on their bicycles and cross central Illinois to raise awareness of and prayers for vocations. This year’s route is expected to cover as many as 275 miles as it takes Father Tom Otto, Father Adam Cesarek and Father Michael […]

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Priests complete ‘incredible’ ride across diocese to inspire prayers for vocations

After riding a little more than 340 miles over five days, Father Michael Pica, Father Adam Cesarek and Father Tom Otto stand just inside Indiana on April 28, bringing “Priests Pedaling for Prayers” to a close. Behind them is one of the support vehicles that accompanied them on the joureny to raise prayers for and awareness of vocations. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

After riding their bicycles a little more than 340 miles over five days, three young priests of the Diocese of Peoria sailed across the Indiana state line on April 28, bringing “Priests Pedaling for Prayers” to a close. “It does seem a little surreal,” said Father Tom Otto of Monmouth at journey’s end. “Things like […]

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Monmouth teacher, students record song to support, promote ‘pedaling priests’

Father Tom Otto watches the debut of the music video "Riding for the Lord" after it was recorded April 5 by the students of Immaculate Conception School in Monmouth. The song supports the bicycle ride across the Diocese of Peoria that Father Otto and two other priests will undertake later this month to seek prayers for priestly vocations. (Provided photo)

MONMOUTH — As Father Tom Otto rides his bike across the Diocese of Peoria to raise prayers for and awareness of vocations, he will have a song in his heart thanks to the students at Immaculate Conception School in Monmouth. “Riding for the Lord” has lyrics written by music teacher Alisa Ramer and is sung […]

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Pilgrims take prayer on the road for Walk to Mercy in Hancock County

Father Tom Otto heard confessions and talked with pilgrims as they made the Walk to Mercy on Sept. 24. The pilgrimage covered 17 miles of Hancock County roads, starting in Dallas City and ending at the Holy Door at Sts. Peter and Paul Church in Nauvoo. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

NAUVOO — First came the Holy Door and prayers of thanksgiving inside Sts. Peter and Paul Church. Then the pilgrims on the Walk to Mercy sought out shade, water and a place take off their shoes as they celebrated the completion of their 17-mile journey from Dallas City. Some had developed blisters, while others contended […]

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