Group Riding 10,000 Miles Through 15 Countries For A Mission
Ed Murray, News 9
BETHANY, Oklahoma -- A Bethany man's spirit of adventure and his heart to help others is taking him to the edge of the Earth. He and five buddies plan to ride their motorcycles from what is regarded as the southern-most city in the world back home to Bethany.
It began as an endurance adventure-- a follow-up to a 5,000 mile trek to the Arctic Circle made by several Southern Nazarene University classmates. But towards the end, the adventure became much more. It became a mission of hope and encouragement to help young leaders of tomorrow and those in need today. But potential violence is a concern in several of the countries the group will be going through, which is why, for now, the riders are only using their first names.
"We've questioned whether or not this is a smart thing to do. It sounded like a good idea at the time," Doug said.
The planning has been a logistical nightmare. The six friends live all over the place-- one is a missionary in Brazil. So the group had to work out the trip via computer and video conferencing, and there are tons of details when you will be run into 14 border crossings. Their friends in South America told them the rewards will be worth the risks.
"It could be dangerous. Something could happen for sure. That's what makes an adventure an adventure, but the reality is you're going to meet hundreds of fantastic people. People who are going to be glad to see you," Doug said.
Still the men and their families aren't shying away from the reality.
"We're being forced before we leave on this trip to put some of our thoughts on paper, have discussions that are easily avoided if you're not doing something like this. So there's an enriching of life that we're experiencing already before we even leave," Doug said.
Doug said he has no doubt that the trip will make an impact on young leaders both in the United States and in Brazil, those in need around the world, missionaries, and themselves.
"We're going to find resources within that we don't have to call upon in our everyday lives here. I think we'll be more alive as a result of this trip," Doug said.
But before that, Doug said he has a big "honey do" list apart from the trip, since he will be gone for two months.
"Margaret is appropriately adding more and more things to my "to do" list, and that's keeping me grounded," Doug said.
The group's bikes have spent the last month in transit. They're on a cargo ship right now somewhere between Brazil and Argentina. The riders will join them next week. Besides the expenses, each rider has pledged at least $1 a mile to the charities and hope you can join them in that aspect of the adventure.