Skip to main contentSkip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
top story

Coalition, churches offering Walk to Bethlehem program

  • Updated
  • 0
Gene Vis

Platte County Lifestyle Coalition Coordinator Gene Vis talks to the crowd at Frankfort Square in May before a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of two new walking trails in downtown Columbus. Vis said the coalition's Walk to Bethlehem program will offer physical benefits and will help strengthen relationships.

In an effort to encourage physical activity in the community, the Platte County Lifestyle Coalition is working with local churches to offer the Walk to Bethlehem program in Columbus.

The Walk to Bethlehem is an intergenerational, imaginary walk beginning in the town where the church is located and ending in Bethlehem, Israel.

The program officially started earlier this month and runs until Saturday, Nov. 27.

In this free program, participants log miles (or mile equivalents for children or those with limited mobility) to make up the 7,500-mile distance between Columbus and Bethlehem. There’s also a curriculum with the walk that includes scripture, meditation and prayers.

“The coalition offers this program to encourage members of the community to participate in physical activity,” said Gene Vis, coalition coordinator. “The coalition’s mission is to promote healthy lifestyles, and this definitely fits in with that.”

Vis said the Walk to Bethlehem program offers more than physical benefits.

“Not only is walking good for you, but it also helps strengthen relationships," Vis said. "Strengthening social relationships and social connection is so important to overall health.”

So far, six Columbus churches are participating in the program: Peace Lutheran Church, Highland Park Evangelical Church, St. Luke’s United Church of Christ, First United Methodist Church, 1C | The Sanctuary and Federated Church. However, there is still time for more churches to sign up, and the walk is also open to people who are not affiliated with a church or faith-based organization.

Those who would like to sign up but are not affiliated with one of the participating churches should contact Vis at 402-562-4686 or For more information on the Walk to Bethlehem or the Platte County Lifestyle Coalition, contact Vis.


Get local news delivered to your inbox!

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

On Monday, Sarah Ehlers started the job she was made to do: Talent and Workforce Development Director for the Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.


News Alerts

Breaking News