Nazarenes in Germany invite runners anywhere in the world to join them in a “decentralized jog-a-thon” 17 May to raise tuition funds for the Nazarene Evangelical School in Beirut, Lebanon.

Gelnhausen and Berlin, Germany, have been the sites of Nazarene-organized jog-a-thons since 1986. Usually held in May or June, the day begins with a worship service in the morning, followed by a potluck. Then participants run, jog or walk along a specified route. Sponsors pledge to donate a certain amount per kilometer covered by the participant. In past years, as much as 14,000 euro has been during a single jog-a-thon.

The global pandemic has led to the cancelation or postponement of many such large-scale events. Rather than cancel this year’s fundraiser (called Joggathon: Lauf! für einen guten Zweck, meaning “Jog-a-Thon: Run! For a good cause), several young men from Gelnhausen Church of the Nazarene had a creative idea: Hold an international jog-a-thon that allows individuals across Germany—and anywhere else in the world—to walk or jog right where they live, and send the funds to Helping Hands e.V., the event’s partnering nonprofit organization. Founded and operated by Nazarenes, Helping Hands Germany is based in Gelnhausen, and supports many Nazarene projects and ministries around the world.

With the jog-a-thon opening now to anyone, anywhere, organizers invited Nazarenes in Lebanon to join the event, including teachers and students at the school. Some have already volunteered to participate in Beirut. (You don’t have to attend a Nazarene church to participate.)

Participants in Gelnhausen will run from 12 to 1 p.m. CEST, although people can jog or walk anytime that day, or even later in the week. Participants from the Nazarene churches in Berlin will do the run the week of 7 to 14 June.

How it works

  1. Participants sign up for the jog-a-thon simply by visiting Helping Hands’ Facebook page or Instagram page and sending a message or comment in their own language that they plan to jog for the Nazarene Evangelical School.
  2. Participants then recruit supporters, who pledge a certain amount per kilometer or mile that the participant jogs or walks.
  3. Participants can run, jog or walk their selected route any time from May 17 – 23.
  4. Using a tracking app on their mobile devices, or Google maps, the participant then calculates the distance they covered.

The participant will then report the actual distance to sponsors and direct them to send their funds to: