Traveling on a bus for 24 hours to the 2013 March for Life in Washington D.C. from Atchison, Kansas, isn't exactly comfortable.
The 380 Benedictine College students on seven buses experience discomfort like the first pilgrims who traveled to holy sites, just in different ways.
Lack of sleep, back aches, bus bathrooms, fast food, no showers: So they may be less serious than the struggles the first pilgrims faced, but we remind ourselves of our purpose when we feel tempted to complain.
We're in it for the babies. Traveling to protest the anniversary of Roe v. Wade is a worthy cause for any struggles we might face, and as pilgrims we tackle the journey with an enthusiastic spirit.
Hundreds of the students jokingly texted their coordinator the message, "Are we there yet?" only two hours into the trek.
While some were serious about the cramped conditions, noisy seat-mates and just spending 22 hours on a bus, this prank demonstrated the energy and mood of the students.
Although the reason for our pilgrimage is anything but light-hearted, the spirit of the students is high.
To pass the time, students play catch-phrase and cards, pull pranks and even invent "bus bowling," trying to knock over water bottles with an apple down the main aisle of the bus.
Tomorrow we will march, protest, pray and remember. But for today, we are caught up in the zeal of fighting for our cause. This zeal keeps us going and brings joy to the start of our pilgrimage.
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Makena Clawson is a student at Benedictine College in Atchinson, Kansas.