January 19 – April 12
Walk to Jerusalem is an imaginary walk that encourages walkers to increase physical activity, spiritual growth, and cultural awareness through a virtual tour to Jerusalem. Anyone can participate regardless of your age or physical fitness level. All types of exercise will count towards your weekly mileage, even day-to-day walking around. Beginning January 19 through April 12, you can help First Presbyterian Church reach Jerusalem by Easter.
The total trip from Sarasota to Jerusalem as planned is 6,650 miles. Don’t be intimidated by the total mileage. We are traveling as a group and all miles will be collected and tracked weekly to help us reach our destination.
To log your mileage, steps, and/or time weekly by going online or you may also drop a note in the offering plate on Sunday with your name, total mileage, total steps, and/or total time. Steps and time will be converted to miles by The Walk to Jerusalem Team.
Be sure to check out the bulletin display and map in Fellowship Hall and narthex for our weekly progress.
Our journey includes 12 weeks of devotionals to spiritually support your increased physical activity. Each devotion is meant to be read as you start your week with questions to ponder as you exercise your body, mind, or spirit.Walk to Jerusalem Devotional
A Culturally Fit Congregation
The terms “neighbor” and “neighborhood” have taken on new meanings in this generation. The neighbors on our street might as well be 3,000 miles across the ocean and the people 3,000 miles across the ocean are in our living rooms via the evening news. We are connected instantly to places with strange names and to people who speak differently, eat differently, and live with much less than we do.
How do we, “the church”, respond to our world? Are we apathetic, ignorant or hostile? Jesus said, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28:19)
Jesus also said in reference to the hurting of this world, “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You? And the King will answer and say to them, “Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ (Matthew 25:37-40)
The beginnings of understanding and reconciliation come with awareness and knowledge. When we take the time to learn about people, we can begin to experience community with those people. Knowing their history, values, living conditions, customs and geographical; location expands our knowledge and understanding. They are no longer statistics, but living, breathing, feeling, and sometimes hurting people created by God.
What made Jesus’ ministry and life so effective and remarkable is that He met people where they were and understood the very core of their being. We the church of the 21st century need to respond to the rest of the world with the compassion of Jesus. This imaginary Walk to Jerusalem is a beginning. Our minds will be filled with new information about our neighbors and our world. Our body will become more physically fit as we walk. Our spiritual lives will be enriched by prayer and meditation.
To increase cultural awareness, take the cultural quotient pretest below!
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