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Wrath, Hope and Peace

by Gerry Lynch last modified 23 Aug, 2017 03:28 PM

Retired vicar celebrates 75 years with 920 miles cycling and £54k raised

Retired Vicar, Robert DeBerry, celebrated his 75th birthday by embarking on a 920-mile bike pilgrimage from Cape Wrath on the North coast of Scotland, through the Hope Valley in Derbyshire to Peacehaven in East Sussex.

The Pewsey-based priest spent more than 90 hours on the saddle and prayed in 34 churches. Together with Bob Laydon, and Roger Spink, he helped raise over £54,000 for persecuted Christians around the world, with Gift Aid still to come! The money raised will be split between the charities Release International and Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW).

“We found churches were very receptive”, said Robert, “The charities had contacts along the way and we were greeted by the Mayor or Peacehaven at the end.”

Originally from London, Robert comes from a strong Christian family as his father was Rector of St Aldate’s Church in Oxford.

After finishing Cambridge University Robert spent a year in Nigeria where he gave his life to Christ.

He returned to England in 1967 and was ordained at Bradford Cathedral, where he met his wife. Following three years as a youth worker in Eastern Uganda, Robert took up the post of Vicar of Attercliffe, an industrial suburb of Sheffield. He was Chaplain to the local steel works and saw an increase in unemployment and depression among the steel workers as the industry fell into decline during the late ‘70s.

Robert has also been Chaplain to a further education college, the Metropolitan Police and Queens Park Rangers football club. 

Robert is already planning a trip to Teso, in Eastern Uganda next year. He hopes to visit a small bible college which helps children who had only limited educations.

Thanks to Steve Connor for the story and photo.

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