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Planned vigil turns into welcome home celebration for Kathryn Stalbaum

WALES, WI (WTAQ) - About two dozen people gathered at a church in Waukesha County Sunday night, to celebrate the return of a missing 15-year-old girl. 

Great Mission Church in Wales had planned the event as a vigil, to pray for the safe return of Kathryn Stalbaum of the town of Genesee. She turned up safe and sound in Chicago on Friday, where a TV station said the girl flagged down a police officer and asked for help. 

Stalbaum was missing since Tuesday, after she missed a school bus and then texted a friend to say she would ride her bike to Kettle Moraine High School. She never made it there, and her bike was found abandoned in Waukesha. 

Authorities have not said why the girl disappeared, or how she ended up in Chicago. 

Family friend Pallin Allen said many questions remain, and the parents chose not to go to the media because, "This needs to be about Kathryn."   

Authorities have not said why the girl disappeared, or how she ended up in Chicago. Church Pastor Jay Cavaiani said it doesn't matter what happened and, "We're just glad she's safe."