Portion for Orphans

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Article reproduced with permission of the publisher: Longview News Journal


East Texas RUNNING: Hope Run to raise funds for foreign orphans


Wednesday, August 10, 2005

A missionary from Marshall hopes a fund-raising run through downtown will draw at least 200 runners Saturday.

The third annual Hope Run, coordinated by Sally Allred and John Lundstedt, benefits orphans in poorer countries.

This year, Allred will be touring orphanages in Russia, India and Thailand, spending funds raised in the Hope Run to meet physical and spiritual needs.

Allred is paying for her own personal travel expenses, leaving in October and returning in April 2006.

Lundstedt, who attends Cypress Valley Bible Church in Marshall with Allred, said his friend's journey is part of an expanding mission the pair envisioned while visiting a Kenyan orphanage operated by a friend.

"We conceived of having this hope run three years ago," Lundstedt said of the 5K run and one-mile fun walk. "The first year we had it, I would say we had about 150 participants. It was kind of amazing."

Participation lagged last year, about 40 or 50 runners, but Lundstedt said he hopes the runners and walkers will rejoin the event this time.

"This year, we're shooting for 200-plus, if we can," he said. "They can register on race day. We've got a couple of teams of volunteers who have got rest stops along the route for drinks and fresh fruit."

Marshall police will close downtown streets for the event, and Marshall fire department paramedics will be on hand, Lundstedt said. Registration begins an hour before the 6 p.m. race, and is $15 for adults and $10 for students.

"I think a lot of people get overwhelmed over what they can't do, but we want people to have some way to help," he said. "The Bible instructs us to not only go and make disciples in all nations, but to meet those other needs that are real. We need to make sure, as believers, that we don't neglect the physical needs of people, while meeting their spiritual needs."

Lundstedt said he and Allred are investigating ways to form a non-profit agency that can accept tax-deductible donations. He also said this year they are focusing on increasing awareness back home of the adoption needs in the countries Allred visits.

"That's kind of the direction we're starting to move toward," he said. "And, there will be a little bit of promotion of that at the Hope Run."

For more information, call Lundstedt at (903) 663-2362 or Allred at (903) 927-0094.

Article reproduced with permission of the publisher: Longview News Journal