He’s done it! You might remember Adrian, an Open Doors supporter who is celebrating his 60th year by completing 60 fundraising activities to raise money and awareness for the persecuted church. Earlier this month, Adrian completed the mammoth challenge – and has so far raised over £6,700! We caught up with him to find out how he got on.
Adrian's sixty challenges – which ranged from the quirky to the extreme – have so far raised over £6,700 for the persecuted church
Memorising parts of the Bible is always a rewarding exercise. But for one Open Doors fundraiser, learning Isaiah 60 by memory had added significance: it was the 60th and final challenge of his 60@60 fundraising activity for Open Doors. His aim was to complete 60 activities – ranging from growing a moustache for 60 hours to going on England’s longest zipwire – in his 60th year. Four days before he turned age 61, Adrian completed his extraordinary challenge. So far, he has raised just over £6,700!
Here, Adrian shares how he got on, including the highs and lows he experienced over the past year, and what advice he’d pass on to fellow fundraisers...
I knew that it would be a challenge but in one sense I didn’t quite know what to expect! It’s probably fair to say that it consumed my life in many ways – physically, emotionally and spiritually.
It provided motivation and reason to do things that pushed me out of my comfort zone which I would never have tried otherwise (e.g. white water rafting). It also provided a push to do things I wanted to do but wouldn’t have done without the motivation of completing the challenge. One of the biggest things I learnt was that fear always appears greater beforehand than it is in reality.
I also learned much about faith. There were several occasions where, having not had a donation in a couple of weeks, God brought encouragement – notably an unexpected donation of £1,000. I also saw answers to prayer when exhausted, frightened, etc.
I look back and am grateful to the Lord for the amazing opportunities the challenge has given me and the things I experienced.
The challenge reinforced a lot of what I already know through being a speaker for Open Doors and having done previous fundraising events.
However, it did give me opportunity to walk alongside the persecuted church in a closer way. During tough physical activities, it was good to think of the pain and challenges persecuted Christians experience – for example, when running, I reflected on the freedom I have when others are stuck in prison cells for their faith. One the challenges was spending a week on one meal a day (bread and soup). It really made me think of those who permanently live this way.
Meanwhile, walking the Pilgrims’ Way (from Winchester to Canterbury) reminded me of the journey of those who historically took the route (often in poor clothes and footwear, far beyond their normal life, in search of God and of hope) and those who do the same today across the world, journeying in search of the Lord.
Overall, the activities reminded me that the story of the persecuted church – which the challenge has enabled me to share with a wider audience – is one that affects real individuals.
Do you have a fundraising challenge you’d love to do? Or are you simply looking for some ideas? Either way, head to our fundraising page for all you need to get started – including loads of handy tips and resources to help spread word of what you’re doing to raise money.
Raise vital funds for vulnerable believers in India by getting sponsored to walk a route and distance of your choice in the summer – all whilst discovering more about what it’s like to live as a Christian in the country.
Your support helps persecuted Christians continue to courageously follow Jesus.
Together, we can reach those where persecution hits hardest.