Thicker than water: Grace Lutheran Church partners to fund well projects overseas
Posted at 12:05 a.m. on Sunday, November 13, 2022
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SALISBURY — Spreading the gospel can take many forms, including sharing resources to access the necessities of life.
Grace Lutheran Church held a 5k run/walk event on Saturday in neighborhoods around the church’s campus.
Pam Roseman, director of the Grace Lutheran Stewardship Committee, said proceeds from the event will go to Lutheran World Relief. The international non-governmental organization focuses on sustainable development projects, disaster relief and recovery.
The particular arm that the run/walk event supported is a project to build sustainable wells in developing countries.
Roseman explained that a well could be built through the organization for around $2,500. Each year, the event, which is in its fifth edition, strives to raise at least as much money.
Just $2,500 can have a huge impact, according to Roseman.
“It will go to a community or a village, and it will provide water for 500 families,” Roseman said. “If there are four people in our family, at least, that’s 2,000 people we can help provide clean water to.”
Roseman’s group has succeeded in this mission, so much so that there is often extra money left over.
“This is our fifth year with the race and we’ve been able to purchase a well every year,” Roseman said. “Some years we collected more than that. So it goes into a partial fund. They will combine other funds to help buy other wells, so 100% of our profits will go to those wells.
Roseman said the additional funds raised combine with other Lutheran churches across the country that operate with similar missions, although not all fundraising mechanisms are identical.
The height of the COVID pandemic put an end to the event, but it picked up where it left off in 2021. However, other financial factors impacted the size of individual contributions.
“We find that with our economy things are tighter,” Roseman said. “It’s harder to spend the extra money. So we try to take that into consideration and keep it low at $20 sign ups to run.
With so many different funds to contribute to, why water? Roseman said it was because of the vital nature of water for healthy living.
“All over the world there are people who care about their clean water,” Roseman said. “Lutheran World Relief sent out a request to churches to help support them through a march, and we thought we could do it.”
Chase Simmons, 14, paced the pack with a time of 20:35 for the 5K. Bethany Vega finished the race as the fastest woman and was only a few paces behind Simmons. Vega’s official time was 8:38 p.m.