Here's a bit of their story.
"Our sisters have staffed the St. Charles Children’s Home in Rochester, New Hampshire, since 1968. The Children’s Home accepts children who have been removed from their family by court order and are under the protection of the Division of Welfare. The grief and anger flowing from a troubled past tends to erupt in disruptive and sometimes violent behavior in these children.Being a runner or spectator here is the best place I know to get a large dose of uplift with a generous side of gratitude. The reason participants enjoy it so much is they run with the people their entry fee supports. As a spectator, I love this race because there are so many kids and families running and walking. This is probably my favorite race to photograph.
In the spring of 1996, the sisters had a “family meeting” with the children to talk with them about healthy ways to release anger and negative emotions. The children came up with many ideas to vent anger in healthy ways. Soon Rose—one of our most aggressive girls—was going for daily hikes on a nearby trail with Sister Maximilian. By the end of the summer these daily hikes turned into daily runs. Meanwhile, the boys became jealous when they heard that Rose could run more than a mile without becoming tired. Since then, the sisters and children run four miles a day and participate in local 5k road races during the year."
Excerpted from the Running Nuns website.
Sadly, I completely screwed the pooch this year. Midway through the race, my camera battery died. I took a minute to mentally kick myself for such stupidity. I was just about to go look for a quiet place to sulk when I remembered I had my cell phone. I suck at taking photos with it but figured I might as well give it a try. Unlike my camera, my cell doesn't allow for action photos taken in zoom mode.
I took the first set of photos with my Nikon. You'll be able to tell when you're looking at my cell phone pictures. They're not pretty but those people you can't see are our friends.
|Sister Maximilian during pre-race ceremonies alongside one of the St. Charles boys.|
|Sister Mary Rose Reddy with one of the St. Charles girls.|
|Kickin' butt and taking no prisoners.|
|Love watching these kids outrun the adults.|
|Brothers finishing together.|
|Isn't she adorable? Poor guys doesn't stand a chance.|
|Another young woman kickin' butt.|
|Pitiful, isn't he? The kids seem to be enjoying themselves and that's all that matters.|
|Yes, that is RM finishing with another personal best. BOOYAH, Baby!|
|One of the Running Nuns with some of the St. Charles kids.|
|That speck is our dear friend Robin.|
|Mr. Bill and son Michael (both in white shirts).|
|Another speck of a friend. This one's Patti.|
|This is Cher. The cat is a stand-in for her mother, Liz, who was right behind her. Missed that shot.|
There are no words to express the wonderment of this event.
If you're within spitting distance of my neck of the woods and at a loss for something to do on Labor Day morning, come on up: run, walk, or cheer for those who do. You'll be glad you did.
Pee Ess: Here's a gratuitous photo of one of the most interested spectators.
|Posting without photo of a critter felt odd so I shot the pug.|