El PASO ON THE MOVE JOINS “LET’S MOVE DAY”
October 5, 2012
By: Norma Rivera, RN MN
The El Paso on the Move together with the surrounding SDA Churches joined the “Let’s Move Day ” of the Adventist Instep for Life to fight the obesity epidemic by sponsoring the McKelligon Canyon Challenge 5K run/walk on September 23, 2012 at 8:00 a.m. There was a tremendous response from the community with 478 registered runners/walkers. The race T-shirts ran out but people still came to register up to 15 minutes before the race. Over 600 people converged at the McKelligon Canyon that day.
The weather was warm and sunny. People came from far and near. Some came from New Orleans, Andrews and Pecos, Texas and Las Cruces, New Mexico. Dionicio Rivera, master of ceremonies, welcomed the people. Stevens Siaji, Fort Bliss chaplain, talked about the body as the temple of God and the importance of taking care of it. Jocelyn Zvoschz sang the national anthem acapela with much acclamation. Young and old joined the “warm up exercise” led by Lydon Hamisi and group. There was excitement and enthusiasm.
As Mike Coulter, race coordinator, gave the signal “ready get set… go!” and blew the whistle everyone struggled to run past the other. The UTEP students headed the race with determination to win. The race was led by pace cyclist, Evelyn Eichler. The air was filled with cheers and shouts by Irvin High School Cheerleaders as the runners ran. Strollers and pets were welcomed. Some took a leisurely walk while others huffed and puffed to the finish line. Cami Torres, a year old, and Martha Leon, 73 years old were the youngest and oldest registered participants.
Among the groups that formed teams of ten or more were El Paso Central SDA Church, Montana Vista SDA Church, Northeast SDA Church, Meraz SDA Church, Las Cruses SDA Church, Vista Hills Health Care Center, Oasis Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, United Blood Services, Providence Hospital, Envision Hospice, Advant-Edge Pharmacy, Mountain Villa Nursing Center and Los Grenudos.
While the runners raced to the finish line, Radames Rodriquez eagerly plunged their time. Stringer, Amy Clapp and Runner, Michael Montgomery quickly gave results for tabulation. After the participants finished the race, they lined up to feast on several tables of healthy foods. They were served with bagels, apples, watermelon, oranges, bananas, yogurt, chocolate milk, pritzels, water, crakers, and trail mix nuts snacks – bananas, cherries, almonds, raisins, and pineapple. Thanks to our generous sponsors.
Rick Cabrera, channel 7 news anchor awarded the medals and trophies. El Paso Central SDA Church winners according to age group were Gloria Martinez, first place; Christopher Swagerty, third place; Kenneth Knight, third place; Josue Martinez, second place; Carolina Martinez, second place; Lucas Muresan, second place; Abigail Flores, third place; Noah Miguel, first place and Darian knight, third place. Northeast SDA church winners were Jaedyn Zvosechz, second place and Zoe Zvosechz, first place. The Lord is great and worthy of praise. Everyone had a good time and nobody was hurt. Rodel Liwanag, EP Central Pastor, closed the event with praise and glory to God who makes all things possible.
It takes faith to see how God works. Organized only three months ago, El Paso on the Move had proven itself to be strong. To start with, it was faced with so many difficulties. It did not have start up money, people did not want to join, and sponsors were hard to get. But we did not let these hindrances intimidate us. We moved forward and God blessed our efforts. With faith we “stepped on the water”. God opened the way and we saw great things the Lord did. It was just like a puzzle with pieces coming together and in the end the object was formed. People and volunteers came together through the leading of the Holy Spirit and the event was not only successful; it was very impressive. One thousand four hundred seventy nine (1,479) miles were achieved that day for the Adventist Instep for Life
Over 700 health magazines and books were given out. About seventy percent (70%) of the people were non-Adventist. We will never know what impact we made to the community. Several from the community will be coming to our vegetarian cooking class held every first Tuesday of the month. Some expressed their desire to teach aerobic classes free of charge and volunteer for next year’s event. Some will keep on moving and exercising to stay fit.
The health message is the entering wedge and the right arm of the gospel. It is powerful and works as double-edged sword. Many more will be reached that would not be reached through preaching alone. Ellen White wrote, “soon there will be no need for ministerial lines, only the medical work in the end. “ We are His hands and feet to accomplish His purpose in this end time. What a privilege we have as a people to make disciples of men. This is a golden opportunity for the church to shine. We need to do more community service and community outreach. We need to go and mingle with the people before we can ask them to follow us just like Jesus did. The people are watching us and are responding.
The McKelligon Canyon 5K Run/Walk was not just any kind of race. It was race to health and hope. Proceeds from the event will go to the El Paso Adventist Junior Academy School Garden and the El Paso Pathfinders. Other programs of the El Paso on the Move include Vegetarian Cooking Classes, Full Plate Diet, Depression Recovery Programs, Stop Smoking and Community Gardens.
To learn more go to Website: ElPasoOnTheMove@gmail; www.Facebook.com/elpasoonthemove