February 2017 – LIFESPAN Youth Mailing

To All Young People, Young Adults, Parents, Grandparents, Teachers, Campus Ministers, Youth Ministers, Directors of Religious Ed, Principals, Deacons, Priests and Pastors, Jr. High/High School/College Students for Life Groups, and anyone else receiving this who work with Young People…

It was a fabulous 2017 “Movement in Motion” Youth Bus Trip to DC in January!  The best ever for me (I have been to DC for the March about 16 times)!  And the largest crowd ever!  See some comments below from my fellow Marchers:

“This was my first time and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  You could feel the fiery energy burning the whole day!  Being pro-life has made me feel alive!”  Emily, student

“I really enjoyed the rally and seeing/hearing famous people speak about Pro-Life was inspiring and encouraging.  I loved the experience and would do it again if given the chance!”  Alyssa, student

“This is my 4th time going to the March (hopefully my last) but it’s the first time I’ve stood for the entire rally and walked the whole March.  It was amazing.  All the speakers were awesome and VP Pence’s historic appearance was inspiring and invigorating!  Seeing all the youth there was also very inspiring!  I hope it’s our generation that will end abortion and lead this country back to our roots in God.”  A.S., student

“I learned that I should be thankful for my life and thankful to my parents for giving me the right to life, love and the pursuit of happiness!”  SLN, student

“On this trip, I learned that I’m not the only one who is against abortion! Seeing all the people made me realize the importance of “one” – that we have to be a voice for the voiceless!”  MHW, student

“Marching for Life with my brothers in our nation’s capital was a truly memorable experience.  It was a fun time for a great cause!”  John, high school student

“I absolutely loved this experience.  It is very powerful to see and interact with people from all over the country that believe in the same views.  I also loved the experience at the Basilica.”  Noah, high school student

This was an amazing experience I will never forget.  It really brought me closer to guys from my school and also to God.  I can now really put in perspective how important being pro-life is for me and so many other people.  It was also fun to just explore D.C.” Carlos, high school student

We came out for a great cause!  Plus we saw VPOTUS!”  Anonymous, high school student

“After three trips chaperoning for the boys at U of D Jesuit, this 2017 has been so inspirational, motivating, and with VP Pence and KellyAnne speaking, I am hopeful that there may be a “Memorial March” instead!”  Anonymous, Chaperone

I really enjoyed the Right to Life March for Life this year.  The Rally was very impressive.  It was nice to see the support in a public forum. For the first time, I saw the start of the March.  I walked for two hours so I would say I walked the whole March. I was tired but it was a good tired for a good cause.  I enjoyed all the new people I met on this trip. Great job in putting this trip together!”  Laurie, Chaperone

This is my first March for Life trip.  I came as a Chaperone.  I leave as a very fulfilled and grateful Catholic with renewed resolution to pray for and participate in the Right to Life Movement! I felt so comforted too by the huge presence of devoted young people! Thank you for all that was done to organize this once in a lifetime opportunity!”  Kathleen, Chaperone

“The March for Life was amazing this year! I loved seeing all the young people.  It was awesome hearing VP Mike Pence speak.  I really enjoyed meeting all the new people on this trip.  I love life!  Thanks for a great trip!”  Bridget, Asst. Chaperone

“I’m so blessed to be able to attend this momentous March with my cousins from Michigan (I’m from Texas)!  God bless!”  Clarisse Olivia, high school student

“Being my first time, I thought that the March for Life was awesome!  Also, I really liked the rally talks and I thought they were very truthful – every life matters!”  Anna, high school student

“This was my first March for Life and it was very fun!  I liked visiting the monuments and marching!  Everyone was so nice and we all stayed safe.  I would love to do this again next year!”  Stephanie, Jr. High student

This was my first year going to the March and boy I had fun!  I wasn’t expecting that many people (well not as many as there were) to be at the March so I got really encouraged!  Coming to the March for me was a very last minute decision, but I am so glad I came!  I loved all of the activities we did and hopefully, I’ll come again next year!”  Mary, high school student

“I was allowed to participate in the decorating of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and it was a great honor!  I believe next year we need to find a way to help people understand and know what an honor it is to participate in the ceremony so they can appreciate it more!”  One of the four Wreath Bearers, we had two high school students and two college students

This was my first year on the March and I’m definitely coming next year!  This was such a great experience and opportunity!  I’d like to thank Mr. and Mrs. Gura and everyone else who put this together and made this trip possible for us.  I’ll be seeing you guys next year for sure!”  Laurel, college student, Jr. Chaperone

“The March for Life has always been something I look forward to participating in every year. Hanging out with friends and making memories is always a great part of the experience, but getting to see so many people all coming together to peacefully protest something that is so important to all of us always inspires me. Being a part of it is even better! I am a part of the prolife generation and it’s such a joyful experience to be marching with young people like me who are ready to make a difference.  This year I was especially excited to be a part of the march because of the congressional changes and the new hope we have. These changes gave everything an air of excitement which was a big part of why I enjoyed the rally so much. Having Vice President Pence come and personally address all of us was beyond awesome, but the rest of the speakers and the band where all amazing too!  I had such a great experience this year (as usual) and I want to give a special thanks to my sponsor who made it possible for me to go as well as give a big thank you to Lifespan and Aunt Lynn for all their hard work!”  Claudia, Jr. Chaperone

It is really easy to get discouraged.  I was especially.  I felt that organizations like Planned Parenthood were “winning” because of the Women’s March and the slow progress of the Pro-Life Movement during the past 8 years.  To be honest, I thought that the Pro-Life Movement was a lost cause (or close to one).  I guess it’s just the feeling that all odds are against us, even Christ says “that people will hate you because of my name”.  I am a very visual person and it’s harder for me to understand things completely without seeing them.  As I stepped across security lines and into the rally, there weren’t many people at first but eventually so many people accumulated that people were squished like sardines in a can and filing space beyond the barriers surrounding the rally.  The March was a great way to walk alongside friends, family, classmates, teachers and all people alike and to let our actions say to the government that we Americans believe and are willing to stand up for this mission of Life and willing to defend it, even if it means angry comments on our Twitter, etc.  Just because we don’t see evil happening doesn’t make it non-existent.  Sometimes we have to step out of the utopia of ourselves into the realities of the world.  The March was a great reassurance of hope that so many people are willing to stand up against a moral injustice!”  Anna, high school student

I hope you enjoyed these assessments from some of the Marchers!  Plans are underway already for the 2018 Youth Bus Trip.  Dates:  departure the evening of Thursday, January 18th, March for Life is on Friday, tour day on Saturday, arrival home the morning of Sunday, January 21st. If you are interested in next year’s trip, please send me back an email with “2018 YOUTH BUS TRIP” in the subject line of your email.  I will be sure to add you to the list to receive information.

On Tuesday, May 16th, we will have our annual “Celebrate Life” fundraiser dinner in Troy at the San Marino Club. The doors will open at 5:30 p.m. and the dinner program will begin at 7:00 p.m.  Still working on the details, but we do have a speaker – I am happy to say it will be Kristan Hawkins, President of Students for Life of America!  Since launching SFLA’s full-time operation in 2006, she has helped more than triple the number of on campus pro-life groups in the United States, from 181 to almost 800 in 49 states  She has grown the SFLA National Conference from 450 in 2007 to over 2,000 in 2012, making the event the largest pro-life conference in the nation.  In 2013, she authored SFLA’s first book Courageous: Students Abolishing Abortion in this Lifetime.

In addition to launching SFLA’s unique, nation-wide Field Program with her team, they have also launched Med Students for Life, Law Students for Life, and Pregnant on Campus – a transformative initiative which strives to connect young women in need on campus to those in the community.

Kristan is the organization’s official spokeswoman and has appeared on Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, EWTN, Family Talk with Dr. James Dobson and the Christian Broadcasting Network.  She is frequently a blogger for LifeNews.com and Townhall.com

Kristan is a dynamic speaker who travels the country talking to students and adults alike on a wide range of topics including Planned Parenthood, Real Feminism, Real Social Justice, and Pro-Life Activism and Leadership.  You can find out more about SFLA at www.studentsforlife.org.

Just a side note, about four summers ago, LIFESPAN and the Educational Center for Life offered a youth conference at Oakland University, hosted by the OU Students for Life group, where Kristan was our main speaker.  She was full of high energy, very informative and motivating – it was a great conference!  I am pleased that we will have her back again for our annual fundraiser.  All students, young adults, parents, teachers, campus ministers, Students for Life groups in Jr. High, High School, and college/universities, etc. are encouraged to join me on May 16th!  Visit the EVENTS page or use this link to get more information!

See some educational and inspiring article links below for you to read and pass along to others!

That’s all for now!

Have a good day!

Keep on Loving Life – born and unborn – throughout the whole Lifespan!                              

   Lynn Gura, Youth Director

   Right to Life – LIFESPAN




            — SENDING YOU THIS ONE BECAUSE IT’S ABOUT SFLA (from August 2016)