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Unique to Birmingham, every year runners at the Mercedes Marathon are greeted at several “cheer stations” by joyful ministers and parishioners from churches along the route. Yesterday, Bham Now collected a series of photos from South Highland Presbyterian Church, Independent Presbyterian Church and the Cathedral Church of Advent of our city’s own brand of Sunday morning race day evangelism.
One of the largest marathon events in the Southeast nearly 6500 people from all over the country participate in the Mercedes-Benz Marathon, Half-Marathon and Marathon Relay. The route for the Sunday race winds through Birmingham’s downtown district and neighborhoods disrupting travel for many Sunday morning church services along the route. Instead of fretting about the inconvenience, churches have turned the race into a celebration. For example, South Highland Presbyterian Church holds a block party with music blaring over loudspeakers.
Community and a welcoming spirit overflows at the cheer stations. It is really something special to see.
And its all for a good cause. The very foundation of the Mercedes-Benz Marathon Weekend is philanthropy. For 17 years MBMW has been a catalyst for raising more than $4 million dollars for local children’s charities and other groups. Visit www.thebellcenter.org to learn about their title charity.
Enjoy the following gallery of photos from churches along the Mercedes Marathon route!