|Pro-Life Volleyball Tournament 2012|
On Saturday, September 22nd, the OLSWA Pro-Life Club held its annual Pro-Life Volleyball Tournament. Sixteen teams registered to play, with participants ranging from volleyball experts to novices, and from OLSWA alumni to prospective OLSWA students. It was terrific to see such a wide-ranging turnout. As Marie-Claire Bissonnette, president of this year’s Paul Sanders and Janine Lieu Pro-Life Club, reports, “There were a lot of students–even if they weren’t proficient at playing volleyball– who made up teams this year. For example, there was a ‘Just for Laughs’ team.”
Each team member paid two dollars to participate, although, as Marie-Claire pointed out, the primary goal of the event was not so much to raise funds, as to get the school involved and to get the word out about the Pro-Life Club. In that regard, Marie-Claire says the afternoon was a great success: “I think it raised the awareness of the presence of the Pro-Life group, for those who haven’t yet attended the meetings.”
The event also included a BBQ dinner where students had a chance to eat, chat, and congratulate the winning team, while mingling with the visiting alumni. New this year, was a corn-eating race, which proved to be highly entertaining. Marie-Claire explained how it worked: “It consisted of ten men, two to a team. The blindfolded ‘eater’ had to have his hands behind his back, and the ‘feeder’ stood behind him and held corn out in front of his mouth. The winning team was the one that could make it through two cobs of corn first, and spectators had an opportunity to place ‘bets’on the contestants.” All in all, it was a fun afternoon of fellowship, food, and volleyball, all for a great cause.
The funds that were raised– about $180 altogether–will be put toward some of the Pro-Life Club’s upcoming events. In particular, Marie-Claire said, the club plans to use the money towards bus rental for students who wish to attend the Defund Abortion Rally in Toronto on October 30th. This will be the second year that OLSWA students will attend the rally.First held last year as an appeal to members of the Ontario legislature to cease funding abortions with Ontario taxpayer dollars, the event included some great speakers, drawing significant media attention. Canada’s Campaign Life Coalition is organizing the rally again, in an attempt to reach especially those MPPs who were newly elected within the past year.
In addition to the Defund Abortion Rally, OLSWA’s Pro-Life Club also has plenty of other events planned. The theme for the club this year is “Spiritual Powerhouse,” which, Marie-Claire explained, means that members will be focusing especially on prayer and fasting, beyond the more active elements associated with Pro-Life work. To that end, one of the events they planned a “silent lunch” day, which took place on Friday (September 28th); participating students ate their lunch without speaking, in solidarity with the voiceless unborn. There was also the annual Life Chain which took place this past Sunday, September 30th, on Main Street in Barry’s Bay, organized by members of the wider local community, in which many students and faculty participated. Finally, on the more active side of things, the club intends to organize a Halloween for Humanity event on October 31st, in order to collect donations for nearby pregnancy centres. With a crew of thirty or so students attending Pro-Life Club meetings, and many others participating in the club's events, Marie-Claire says that members are optimistic for another rewarding year of working to reverse the culture of death, and witnessing to the dignity and sanctity of human life.