In a recent letter, he says he is seeking pledges for the miles he will run to help pay off the debt incurred with the restoration of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. The text of the letter follows, with my emphases:
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ:
As you may already know, I enjoy running and over the years have participated in 16 marathons. I am currently training to run the 26.2 mile Denver marathon on Oct. 17, 2010.
One of the reasons I run marathons is to raise funds for charity. This year I have decided to dedicate my marathon effort to help pay off the debt of the recent restoration of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield.
Many people who attended my installation as your new bishop in June made very favorable comments about the newly-restored Cathedral. Catholics in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois can take rightful pride in our beautiful mother church, especially the many people who have already contributed generously to help pay the restoration costs. However, due to unexpected expenses there is an outstanding debt of $2.07 million. I would like to make a push to retire this debt completely.
If you would like to support me in this effort, I invite you to make a tax-deductible pledge donation (e.g., $2 per mile x 26.2 miles = $52.40).
If you have any prayer intentions that you would like me to include while I am running and praying, please write them down and return them to me.
As sacred Scripture says, "Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us" (Hebrews 12:1). Your support will be greatly appreciated by me and all Catholics who gather and pray at our magnificent Cathedral.
God bless you,
Most Reverend Thomas John Paprocki
Bishop of Springfield in Illinois