Benedictine College Students Head for 2019 March for Life

Benedictine College Students Head for 2019 March for Life

Four Busloads Heading to D.C.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Students about to board the buses for the 2019 March for Life

More than 200 Benedictine College students gathered with faculty and staff on a chilly winter day in Atchison, Kansas, on January 16, prepared to face a 1,100-mile, 27-hour journey to Washington, D.C., to participate in the 2019 March for Life. The College and its Ravens Respect Life student organization were proud to lead the March in 2014 and this is now the 33rd year they will participate. Each year, Benedictine College usually brings the largest group traveling the greatest distance for the annual March.

See pictures of Benedictine College at March for Life 2019 here.

“I have grown up in the pro-life movement and I really feel like we are truly the pro-life generation,” said Marie Baert, the March for Life coordinator for Ravens Respect Life. “I'm proud to take the lead and I'm very proud to say that 'Ravens will March.'”

Marie Baert

Baert, a Benedictine College junior from Plano, Texas, has been a strong supporter of pro-life issues since she was a child.

“My parents always made it a point to keep my brother and I involved with the pro-life movement,” she said. “I got involved from a young age because my family was always reading for Lone Rose Sunday at our church and helping distribute the baby banks after mass.”

She started working for life on her own in high school, where she joined the pro-life club. She worked to bring the “Hike for Life” to her school and always wanted to make a March for Life trip happen there, but it never did.

She immediately jumped at the chance to go to the March as a freshman at Benedictine College.

“After attending my freshmen year, I had a desire to do something more with the March because it made such a big impact on my life to see that many college students miss class and go through the bus ride to go fight for the cause.”

She was given the opportunity last year, when the March for Life coordinator, Katie Probst (Class of 2018) asked her to be her assistant for that year’s trip.

“I grew a lot in my knowledge and learned from Katie how to make the trip possible, so I was excited to take it on this year,” said Baert. “My favorite part of being the coordinator is being able to see first-hand the passion that college students have for this cause and the need to send our group on this long trip!”

The college’s trip to the March for Life started with Benedictine students who were interacting with the Kansans for Life organization. Then the school’s Knights of Columbus chapter took the lead and was a major promoter of the event. The first few years saw a handful of students go, but the numbers began to grow.  In 1989, students at Benedictine College became so focused on right-to-life issues that they formed the Ravens Respect Life organization, using the name of the Benedictine College mascot.

In 2009, the Benedictine College presence attracted the attention of documentary film makers, who then featured Benedictine students in their film. “Thine Eyes: A Witness to the March for Life” was shot on location by a six-camera crew to share the spirit of the annual March. It has now been seen on national television on EWTN and in theaters across the country.

Read more about the thriving faith life on the Benedictine College campus.

Founded in 1858, Benedictine College is a Catholic, Benedictine, residential, liberal arts college located on the bluffs above the Missouri River in Atchison, Kansas.  The school is proud to have been named one of America’s Best Colleges by U.S. News & World Report as well as one of the top Catholic colleges in the nation by First Things magazine and the Newman Guide.  It prides itself on outstanding academics, extraordinary faith life, strong athletic programs, and an exceptional sense of community and belonging.  It has a mission to educate men and women within a community of faith and scholarship.