The Revd John Hetherington retired recently as Rector of Monk Fryston and South Milford, and is now helping to celebrate the 600th anniversary of St John the Baptist and All Saints' Parish Church, Easingwold.
Inspired by the practice of Our Lord (and other biblical characters) to climb hills and mountains to pray, he will climb the equivalent of Mount Everest by tackling 19 hills in the North Yorkshire Moors National Park, and then the Three Yorkshire Peaks of Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough. This will be a total climb equal to the 29,000 feet of Everest, the world's highest mountain.
And to make absolutely sure, John will also climb Ben Nevis, Snowden and Scafell Pike, the highest peaks respectively in Scotland, Wales and England, adding an extra 10,250 feet which will take him well over his goal of 37,000 feet, making a thousand feet of climbing for each of the 37 Vicars of Easingwold (including the present one, the Revd Margaret Young) since the present church was built in 1418.
John explains: "As a priest who has served as a vicar and rector over the years, I relate as much to those who have served in parishes as I do to the marvellous buildings which have been the focal points of their ministry."
For every 1,000 feet climbed, John plans to plant a small cross in the ground to celebrate one of these faithful priests who each served the community of Easingwold in their time, and he will offer prayers of thanksgiving for their work and ministry among those they served.