From the Atlantic to the Pacific
M o s c o w – Persons hoping to transfer a little water from the Atlantic to the Pacific are invited to take part in a Russian Baptist-sponsored bicycle tour. Yet interested parties should reckon with 15.000 strenuous kilometres (8.600 miles) in the saddle. The Russian tour through Germany ibicycle tour Vladivostok s scheduled for roughly 13 to 20 May, the party of 14 drivers and approximately six support staff are hoping to arrive in Vladivostok on 2 September.
Following the start on France’s Atlantic coast, the planned route through Germany should include the cities of Troisdorf (Bonn), Kassel, Espelkamp, Porta Westfalica and Berlin. In Germany the group hopes to ride 150 – 200 km per day. A lively, Russian-Ukrainian youth band, the “Living Drops”, is expected to supply the music for evening events in Germany.
Russian Baptists are no newlings regarding such tours. In 2005, 24 groups toured through 24 regions of Russia; a year later a group of well-trained cyclists pedaled from Bryansk near the border with Belarus to Omsk in Western Siberia. These tours are a part of the missions programme “The Gospel to the Peoples of the World”. Responsible for the ride to Vladivostok is Leonid Kartavenko (Moscow), head of the department for home missions.
Katya Kolesinskaya (Moscow), a home missions worker, was asked why Russian Baptists go to the trouble of holding such tours: “We want above all to proclaim the Gospel and accustom and train young people to spread the Word. We want to show unbelieving young people what a fulfilled life without drugs can be like. We want to encourage and awaken small and forgotten congregations.”
The group is asking German friends if they know of youths capable of impressive tricks on cross-bikes who would be willing to entertain young people at evening meetings. In Russia, a recumbent bicycle would be a great attention-getter. A minibus is still needed to accompany the tour through Germany.
Exact dates and locations for the German tour are to be made public no later than the end of April. The tour will continue on through Poznan and Warsaw in Poland to Brest in Belarus.
The Russian Union of Evangelical Christians-Baptists represents 78.000 baptised believers in 1.930 congregations and groups. The Union’s General-Secretary is Yuri Sipko (54).
Dr. William Yoder
Department for External Church Relations, RUECB
Moscow, 17 March 2007
A press release of the Russian Union of Evangelical Christians-Baptists. May be published freely. Release #07-7, 405 words.
Note from May 2021: The tour then actually began on 13 May 2007 at the North Sea near Varel/Germany.