Relay For Life

Relay For Life

On Friday, June 18th, the Sant Nirankari Mission, Chicago youth gathered to participate in Relay For Life, an event constructed by the American Cancer Society in the effort to raise awareness of cancer and to encourage the donation of money for cancer research. Relay for Life proves to be a heart-warming experience in which individuals from various backgrounds come together for the purpose of fighting against cancer, as well as to celebrate all those who have had cancer and survived the battle.

After months of planning, the weather decided not to agree with the night’s plans. The 12-hour event turned into a five-hour program because the heavy rain and winds put a damper on the evening. However, the youth refused to let the weather bring down their morale. Instead of pouting or complaining, they turned the negative energy into positive thoughts as they brought smiles onto everyone’s faces. Not only did the youth encourage their own team to enjoy the event, they also sang and danced in the rain allowing other teams to be reminded of their hopeful purpose.

The highlight of the event was the bonding that took place between the members. Whether they were participating in jazzercise or singing, “lean on me,” the youth took time to remember the common thread of universal brotherhood that united them. They took Babaji’s message of service and made the effort for a human cause. During the banner lap, the team walked together representing the mission, and with the chant “Brotherhood!” they brought cheer into the atmosphere.

Team Universal Brotherhood reminisced about loved ones during the Lumanaria lap, which is a time for everyone to remember those lost in the battle of cancer. This year, the team illuminated candles for Professor Joginder Singh Puri lovingly known as “Dar Ji”, Mrs. Krishna Bajaj also called “Dadima Bajaj”, Sonia Mukhi (from St. Louis), Mr. Gulshan Chowdhary (Relative of Ruchika Bhasin), and Biji (Grandma of Raj Karan Singh and Nimarta Singh). With hope in their hearts, the team recalled happy memories and virtues from the enlightened saints. The event concluded beautifully with the reciting of names and a song highlighting the need to find hope in life regardless of the challenges we encounter.

This year, 65 teams participated in the event at Schuamburg’s Flyer Stadium and the money raised is $160,000 and still counting. The money not only goes to cancer research, but it also assists those who are less fortunate with treatment and transportation. Team Universal Brotherhood which consisted of 43 members raised approximately $3,700 and received a bronze award for its efforts.

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