PEEKSKILL, NY (WCBS 880) – Father John Higgins is a priest on a pilgrimage, a holy man hiking to help the children of Peekskill.

WCBS 880’s Sean Adams On The Story

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Higgins celebrated morning mass at Assumption Church Thursday, slipped into his sneakers, said a quick prayer for good weather, then headed south 50 miles on foot to St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Midtown Manhattan.

He’s raising money for the Assumption School.

“The enrollment in the school is good, but we need money. Our school has a lot of students who are from families that live below the poverty line. They can’t afford the tuition. So, we have to find a way to bridge the gap,” Higgins told WCBS 880 reporter Sean Adams.

Every step brings him closer to one $105,000 for 105 years of Assumption parish.

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“Assumption School is taking kids from poverty and rocketing them in one generation to becoming professional productive Catholic Christian adults. It’s the only Roman Catholic church in Peekskill. We’re the only Roman Catholic school here in Peekskill and there are so many kids that need this help,” Higgins said.

“He goes up and beyond. He’s a wonderful, wonderful priest,” said parishioner Ellen Creedon. “We’re very blessed to have him.”

He’s following Route 9 to Broadway into Midtown.

For the journey, Father Higgins carries nothing more than the faith in his heart, rosary beads and a cell phone for Twitter updates. You can follow him at

He hopes to arrive at St. Patrick’s Cathedral after two days.

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What is the farthest you have ever walked? Share your story in the comments section below…