Seminarians – the Witnesses of Life
Mount Angel Seminarians participate in the 6th Annual Walk for Life
by Quyen Truong
In recent years, seminarians of Mount Angel Seminary have been participating in the annual Walk for Life in San Francisco. This event is an opportunity for seminarians to tell people who respect life that they are united with the people in their prayers for life. The seminarians also share in the people’s witness to life.
Forty-six seminarians of Mount Angel Seminary attended the 6th Walk for Life in the Bay Area with thousands of participants and raised banners for life. “It is a golden opportunity for me to stand up with pro-lifers to save the right of life for many unborn babies,” said Tuan Pham, a pre-theology seminarian. “The Walk was an invaluable experience for my vocational ministry, God willing, because I could walk the teachings of our Good Lord and the doctrine of the Church,” Pham continued.
“It is a blessing for me to be a part of the walk. I was so excited because almost fifty of our brother seminarians joined the Walk,” said Deacon Matthew Ramsey, the Mount Angel Seminary organizer for the 6th Walk for Life. He also admitted that he was overwhelmed with the amount of work, including making arrangements for transportation, food and drink, and things needed for the trip. He also coordinated with seminarians of Saint Patrick Seminary for accommodations. Nevertheless, the Walk was a good chance for him to learn and exercise leadership.
The Walk not only benefits God’s people but also seminarians themselves. “The Walk for Life wonderfully benefits seminarians in forming the image of a public person who is the witness of the truth and the sanctity of life,” said Peter Burger, a member of the Peace and Social Justice Committee and co-organizer of seventh Walk for Life. The Walk is also an opportunity for seminarians to put into action and fully integrate the truth of the faith into their lives.
From now on the Peace and Social Justice Committee of Mount Angel Seminary will be in charge of organizing the annual Walk for seminary participants. “I am glad and grateful to the individuals who organized previous Walks,” said Peter Berger, “and now the annual Walk is organized by the committee and officially becomes a part of the seminary.”
In addition to witnessing for life, the presence of seminarians, religious brothers and sisters, and priests means so much to the Walk for Life and the people of God. “The image of seminarians and priests with collars and the religious in their habits walking with people says that the Church is always beside her children in the battle for life,” said Grant Boggs, a college seminarian from the Diocese of Seattle.
According to the homepage of the Walk for Life West Coast (http://www.walkforlifewc.com/), the 7th Walk for Life will be on January 22, 2011, at Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco. “The Peace and Social Justice Committee hopes that the members of the hilltop will dedicate their gifts and talents together with the committee to organize a successful 7th Walk for Life,” said Peter Burger.
In 2005, the pro-life movement started its very first Walk for Life in San Francisco, and since then the Walk is held annually. According to San Francisco Catholic, the 6th annual Walk for Life took place on January 23, 2010, and gathered some 35,000 people. They came from the Bay Area, many dioceses, seminaries, and religious orders, and several states nationwide.