The March goes on

March for Life

By Joe Bollig

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — With “Snowzilla” poised to start clobbering Washington, D.C., and the eastern seaboard any minute, almost every group from the archdiocese had to make the tough decision to head back home before the annual March for Life on Jan. 22 could even begin.

They made a run for it by any means possible — planes, trains, automobiles and, of course, the ubiquitous buses.

Most are back by now, but even as this issue goes to press, groups from the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas are straggling back into town.

Three buses sponsored by the archdiocese (with marchers from St. James Academy in Lenexa; Bishop Ward High School in Kansas City, Kansas; Maur Hill-Mount Academy in Atchison; St. Bernard Parish in Wamego; and Curé of Ars in Leawood) left for home the morning of the march and only had to drive for one hour through the snow.

The bus from Bishop Miege High School in Roeland Park also just managed to scoot out ahead of the officially named Winter Storm Jonas. The same was true for five buses from Benedictine College in Atchison.

Flights were canceled not only on the day the storm hit, but for most of the weekend that followed, leaving the contingent from St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Overland Park stranded. They straggled home in waves as flights became available.

By press time Tuesday morning, Jan. 26, two groups from St. John the Evangelist Parish in Lawrence were on separate Amtrak trains, headed home.

Finally, intrepid Leaven freelancers Marc and Julie Anderson, members of Christ the King Parish in Topeka, arrived home at midnight on Jan. 25.

They and their niece, Hayden High senior Rose Hockenberry, were perhaps the only representatives of the archdiocese to actually march this year.

Locally, there was a prolife Mass, march and rally in Topeka, to coincide with the national March for Life. The event drew several hundred participants.

After Mass at the Topeka Performing Arts Center, participants marched to the state Capitol a few blocks away and held a rally on the steps.

About the author

Joe Bollig

Joe has been with The Leaven since 1993. He has a bachelor’s degree in communications and a master’s degree in journalism. Before entering print journalism he worked in commercial radio. He has worked for the St. Joseph (Mo.) News-Press and Sun Publications in Overland Park. During his journalistic career he has covered beats including police, fire, business, features, general assignment and religion. While at The Leaven he has been a writer, photographer and videographer. He has won or shared several Catholic Press Association awards, as well as Archbishop Edward T. O’Meara awards for mission coverage. He graduated with a certification in catechesis from a two-year distance learning program offered by the Maryvale Institute for Catechesis, Theology, Philosophy and Religious Education at Old Oscott, Great Barr, in Birmingham, England.

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