Runners are primed for London Marathon

Jesuit Missions has assembled its largest ever team for next weekend’s London Marathon. The team of 39 runners includes a father and son from Mount St Mary’s College in Spinkhill, two of the Jesuit Missions’ Director’s nieces and a Jesuit deacon from Poland.

Deacon Mateusz Konopinski SJ (far left) is a Polish Jesuit who came to London last year to study at the Bellarmine Institute at Heythrop College and to serve in the Jesuit parish of Farm Street, central London. Having just celebrated his 30th birthday, Mateusz has already completed three marathons in Poland – but this is his first for charity. “Now is a good time to run one of the best Marathons in the world – London,” he says. “That will be a very intensive time, because I really like testing myself in this kind of trial.”  Please sponsor Mateusz via his fundraising page.

Pilgrimage

Running beside him will be  Sebastian Cichocki , who is the Maintenance Manager for the Mount Street Jesuit Community. He started to run a marathon in his native Poland 12 years ago, but had to abandon it when his knee gave out. Since then, he has walked the Camino de Santiago or Way of St James in Spain. This 900 km (500 mile) pilgrimage involved walking up to 26 miles per day – with a backpack – so Sebastian believes the experience will have helped prepare him for the London course. He also recently completed a half-marathon in North London.   Please sponsor Sebastian via his fundraising page.

Over the years, Jesuit Missions runners have raised thousands of pounds for causes such as primary school education in Tanzania and Zimbabwe, bursary support in South Africa, rehab facilities in Guyana in South America and emergency assistance for refugees in conjunction with Jesuit Refugee Service. Further funds will enable Jesuits around the world to continue their work alongside the poor and the marginalised.