By Nancy Thorner -
I applaud Mark Weyermuller for his well-written article with photos published on Monday, January 16, at Illinois Review, Where's Weyermuller Marching with Life Lovers in Chicago. As Mark related in the first paragraph of his article:
"Thousands of pro-life activists marched Sunday in Chicago to celebrate life and protest abortion in America. The march is held annually at this time of year in response to the Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion 44 years on January 22, 1973, commonly called Roe V. Wade. There are estimates that 55 million babies have been legally killed (some say murdered) in that time."
From Marytown to Federal Plaza in Chicago
My participation in the Chicago March for Life started from Marytown at 1600 W. Park Ave. in Libertyville via a bus arranged by The Lake County Right to Life, a sponsor of the March for Life Chicago. Joining me aboard the 55 seat coach bus were four members of a home school family of eight from Wauconda, Illinois: Barrett, Benjamin, Elizabeth and Timothy Weadick. We drove together to board the bus from our church, Lakeview Presbyterian Church PCA in Mundelein.
On the way to Chicago Benjamin, 17, told me that upon reaching Chicago he and his brother, Barrett, would be leaving me and their younger sister and brother to join up with the Crusaders for life from Volo IL. I was further told by Benjamin that Crusaders would also be there from St. John Cantius in Chicago, and that the St. John Cantius in Chicago and St. Peter's in Volo together form one group.
As Mr. Weyermuller had not mentioned the appearance of this noteworthy group of young people in his March for Life Chicago article, I was all ears to learn more about the Crusaders who meet monthly at St. Peter's in Volo, IL, the group in which Barrett and Benjamin Weadick participate.
Benjamin Weadick related how before the parade this past Sunday the Crusaders blew up all the balloons and assembled the balloon trees. They then drove around Chicago in open top buses in their bright yellow outfits and balloons.
Determined not to miss any of the Crusaders' participation in the parade, I made sure I was near the front of the march after the rally ended with the two younger Weadick children. I wasn't disappointed and observed:
- A band leading chants for the people at the rally.
- Teams of people holding balloon lines above crowds.
- Crusaders cheering on the other marchers.
About the Crusaders
I later learned more about the Crusaders, an amazing group of young people, from Rose Lareau, age 18, who serves as secretary of the Crusaders. Rose explained how the Volo crusaders and the Saint John Cantius crusaders are one in the same. "We're all one large group. We just have our meeting at Volo and at Cantius because Volo is a far drive for many."
As related by Rose:
The Crusaders have a meeting once a month to talk about any up-coming events that might interest the group. Usually the meeting also includes a pro-life speaker. Crusaders believe that every child deserves to live no matter how they were conceived and no matter if they have a possibility of being handy capped or with any other disorder.
Yellow is worn as a sign of joy. Yellow is also worn because of the Vatican flag. The gold on the Vatican flag represents spiritual power which all Crusaders have within themselves. This spiritual power leads Crusaders to cheer, pray, and even jump around, as they display the joy and love they have for everyone, even the pro-choicers.
Crusaders don't hate pro-choice individuals; no one should hate them. We should instead feel sorry for them and pray that their hearts will be changed and see the wrong in abortion. Every single person that God has ever made should have the chance to live. No one should have any say over a tiny child's life. It's all God's choice, and He has a plan for every single person.
Account by Rose of Crusader participation
The morning of the Chicago March, Crusaders went to mass and prayed for the unborn children. After mass the balloons were blown up and tied onto our balloon lines. While most the crusaders were doing that, the drummers were in another room practicing their drumming for all the dancing and cheering. Once it was 11:30, we all went outside to the double decker buses and trolleys. We hung signs on the buses and brought out with us our balloons.
All decked out in yellow, we were ready to drive around Chicago by noon. We left Saint John Cantius and were on our way around the city to cheer and sing and to spread the love and joy the crusaders have for everyone around them. A few people booed or yelled at us, but we just smiled and kept cheering and waving. When going under some bridges, it was a very tight squeeze because we had balloons and signs, but we made it through.
Finally arriving at the site of the rally where other pro-lifers were already gathered, there was much cheering and waving because of the felt happiness at seeing everyone. We unloaded the buses and trolleys, taking our signs and balloons with us. Attending the rally, we were excited to see alumni crusader, Randy Dziak, up there speaking on the raised platform.
The rally having ended, we started the march around the city, using all our energy in cheering and jumping around — and in the process losing our voices — while taking lots of pictures and videos of everyone.
At the conclusion of March for Life Chicago, crusaders from Saint John Cantius in Chicago and Saint Peter's in Volo expressed felt love for their participation in the Chicago March, hoping they brought much joy to everyone as they waved, smiled, and sang.
160 Crusaders, including the Volo Crusaders, will be taking buses on a three-day march tour and will attend marches in Springfield IL, Jan 27; St. Louis, Missouri, Jan 28; and Indianapolis IN on Jan 29. Barrett and Benjamin Weadick will be participating.
In past years the Crusaders have attended the DC March for life in a similar fashion by taking buses to the march.
Learn more about the Crusaders by checking out this website. http://www.lifeballoons.com/