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Mom’s ‘Ironman’ Fight For People Going Through Hard Times

by Steve Rees

This inspiring video was created by the son of husband and wife pastors to honor his mother’s seventh-place finish in an Ironman Triathlon – a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile marathon run – for her way of helping support ministry to down and out people.

With Hebrews 12:1-2 and the Latin words “Nihil sine Deo” as inspiration, Pastor Mary Bangs finished in 15 hours and 37 minutes with 13 other women ages 55-59. “Hebrews 12:1-2 says it best, which is to run the race set before us with endurance,” Bangs told the Reporter-Herald newspaper in Loveland, Colo. “It has helped me to understand that this race we call life takes committed, diligent endurance as we walk with the Lord.”

This inspiring video was created by the son of husband and wife pastors to honor his mother’s seventh-place finish in an Ironman Triathlon – a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile marathon run – for her way of helping support ministry to down and out people. With Hebrews 12:1-2 and the La

“Nothing Without God,” a theme at the church where Bangs and husband Steve train ministry students, emboldened the 57-year-old to compete recently in her first Ironman Triathlon. Her purpose was to raise funds for outreach in Colorado like Pastor Matthew Barnett’s Dream Center does for people on skid row in Los Angeles.
Bangs’ supporters donated $5,000 toward a Dream Center in northern Colorado.

Honestly, I couldn’t have done this without God,” said Bangs, pointing out her race motto, Nihil sine Deo, also the inscription on Colorado’s state seal. “That was really true for this triathlon.”

Nothing Without God” is also the theme of Rez. Church, where Mary and Steve Bangs are pastors. It envisions 100 new church plants in Colorado.

Assist News has reported on other competitions Bangs has undertaken through the years, despite a diagnosis of a rare adrenal-gland disorder and serious challenges to her health and life.

Two other near-death experiences – one resulting from cardiac arrest in 1991 during an outpatient procedure and another from a broken abdominal-cavity vein – haven’t dampened Bang’s faith or competitive spirit.

It was a small victory for her to not only be able to dream something even for an ordinary person is a high, lofty thing,” husband Steve Bangs said. “I was getting excited for her just because I knew how hard she trained and the fact she would never let something hold her back.

I felt like I could encourage her back in doing this,” Steve Bangs said. “She’s been an encouragement to a lot of people just because of what she’s gone through. That’s been rewarding and neat to see.”

Bangs isn’t shy, asking readers inspired by her faith and athleticism to contribute to the northern Colorado Dream Center through Rez.Church.

Son Jared Bangs was on hand in Boulder to record his mother cross the finish line. He added the song “God I Look To You” by Bethel Church’s Jenn Johnson as a gift to his mother.

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