26 run to raise support for global archdiocese endorsing priests to serve as chaplains in U.S. military
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Archdiocese for the Military Services (AMS) will participate in this year’s Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) as a Charity Partner. The MCM is the fourth largest marathon in the United States and the largest in the world that does not offer prize money. Known as “The People’s Marathon,” the MCM began in 1976 with 1,175 participants. In 2012, the marathon had 23,515 official finishers.
On Sunday, Oct. 27, a team of 26 men and women representing the AMS will run in the MCM to raise funds and greater awareness for the global archdiocese, which has exclusive responsibility for endorsing priests to serve as chaplains in the U.S. military. Team AMS includes military personnel, priest-chaplains and seminarians enrolled in the Co-Sponsored Seminarian Program, a partnership between the AMS and participating local dioceses and religious orders to support priestly vocations.
Father Kevin Cusick, a lieutenant commander in the Navy Reserves, is among those on the team. A veteran of the Marine Corps Marathon, Father Cusick has run the race twice before. He says he’ll run again this year “to help bring a spotlight on AMS’ urgent need for priest-chaplain vocations.” Last year Archbishop Timothy Broglio generously offered to celebrate Sunday Masses at Father Cusick’s parish so that he would be able to run in the race.
A former co-sponsored seminarian himself, Father Cusick is joined by several men currently in the program. Among them is James Hickman, a West Point graduate and U.S. Army Captain. As someone who has been directly affected by the work of the AMS and its chaplains, he sees his participation in the marathon as a way to “personally contribute to the cause.” In doing so, he is “raising money and awareness for a cause centered directly on Christ” and adds a new element to his training. He sees the training process and marathon as “an opportunity to offer sacrifice on behalf of the AMS, [with] each painful training run…offered for the souls in need [and] each runner’s high…a reminder of [his] joy as a Christian man who has been redeemed by our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ.”
There are two ways to support Father Cusick, James Hickman and the other two dozen runners on Team AMS. The first is through prayer—each runner has generously volunteered to train for and run in the marathon because they believe in the mission of this Archdiocese. You may also choose to sponsor a runner or Team AMS financially. Each runner has an individual fundraising goal and Team AMS as a whole is hoping to raise $25,000 for this Archdiocese. For more information or to make a donation, visit www.milarch.org/runforams.
The Archdiocese for the Military Services (AMS) was created as an independent archdiocese by Pope John Paul II in 1985 as the only Catholic jurisdiction responsible for endorsing and granting faculties for priests to serve as chaplains in the U.S. military and VA Medical Centers.
AMS-endorsed priests serve at more than 220 U.S. military installations in 29 countries, making the AMS the nation’s only global archdiocese. AMS-endorsed priests also serve at 153 VA Medical Centers throughout the U.S.
The AMS service population also includes American Catholic civilians working for the federal government in 134 countries, but currently, due to limited resources, the AMS cannot adequately serve this population.
Worldwide, an estimated 1.8 million Catholics depend on the AMS to meet their spiritual and sacramental needs.
For more information on the Archdiocese for the Military Services, visit www.milarch.org, the only official website for Catholics in the military and for the Cause of Father Vincent Capodanno, MM.