Archdiocese Local Ministries

Archbishop honored for pro-life support

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann received the Charles A. Sullivan Award for his support of the Wyandotte Pregnancy Clinic. LEAVEN PHOTO BY MARC ANDERSON

by Marc and Julie Anderson

As part of the “Evening for Life,” Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann received the Charles A. Sullivan Award, named after one of the earliest supporters of the Wyandotte Pregnancy Clinic. 

In bestowing the honor, Leah Conner, executive director of the clinic, said the archbishop was an appropriate recipient.

“It was at Archbishop Naumann’s initiative that Wyandotte Pregnancy Clinic opened its doors,” she said. “His ongoing support and encouragement give both our clinics the courage and fortitude to continue our mission in saving the lives of the unborn.”

In his short acceptance speech, Archbishop Naumann said he would “treasure this award.”  

Upon becoming archbishop in 2005, Archbishop Naumann said he had asked the pro-life office how the archdiocese was helping those facing unplanned pregnancies, especially in underserved areas. Wyandotte County, he said, was one area leaders felt strongly about.

“I’m really grateful to those that really took up that challenge,” he added. “It’s been a privilege as archbishop and in our archdiocese to support [the Wyandotte Pregnancy Clinic].” 

Elsewhere, the archbishop discussed the recent Kansas Supreme Court ruling and urged everyone to get behind the effort to amend the Kansas Constitution. Ultimately though, he said love was the key to ridding American society of abortion.

“Whether Roe v. Wade is overturned or diminished or whether we’re successful or not with our Kansas Supreme Court overturning that decision by a constitutional amendment, our crisis pregnancy centers remain essential,” he said. “What we can’t do with law, we can do with love. 

“That’s what this event is about tonight — surrounding those that might be tempted to think that abortion is the solution to some of the challenges of life.”

About the author

Marc & Julie Anderson

Freelancers Marc and Julie Anderson are long-time contributors to the Leaven. Married in 1996, for several years the high school sweethearts edited The Crown, the former newspaper of Christ the King Parish in Topeka which Julie has attended since its founding in 1977. In 2000, the Leaven offered the couple their first assignment. Since then, the Andersons’ work has also been featured in a variety of other Catholic and prolife media outlets. The couple has received numerous journalism awards from the Knights of Columbus, National Right to Life and the Catholic Press Association including three for their work on “Think It’s Not Happening Near You? Think Again,” a piece about human trafficking. A lifelong Catholic, Julie graduated from Most Pure Heart of Mary Grade School and Hayden Catholic High School in Topeka. Marc was received into the Catholic Church in 1993 at St. Paul Parish – Newman Center at Wichita State University. The two hold degrees from Washburn University in Topeka. Their only son, William James, was stillborn in 1997.

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