Saturday, January 26, 2013

The March for Life


Yesterday there was an enormous protest march in Washington DC. Since our readers are unlikely to hear about it on any news outlet, someone ought to mention it here.(I remember once when CNN had live helicopter coverage of a gay rights march that involved perhaps twenty-five people. But that's another story.)

This is the story of yesterday. It was ridiculously cold in Washington, and hundreds of thousands of pro-life protestors marched. I wasn't there this year, although I would have liked to be. It is a great day. All around you are these young people marching. You see young men, young families, and overwhelmingly, teenage girls.

I've never been a huge fan of the pre-march rally on the Mall, but I really really like the Masses. There are two Masses at the National Shrine's Upper Church, and a big Youth Mass at the Verizon Center. 


It's a day filled with hope, and one which I hope will be unnecessary soon. One of these years--next year--wouldn't it be wonderful to have one last March, a thank-you March for civil officials with the eyes to see and act to remove this civil rights atrocity from the land of the free, from the land where everyone has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

I like to think that the young people who have been participating in this civil protests for decades are building a new pro-life generation. This is certainly possible. But in the words of Scripture, How long, O Lord, how long? How long before a nation wakes up and realizes (who knew?) that ravaging children is wrong?

For now my feelings on the subject are best expressed by a few lines from Hopkins:
Hope had grown grey hairs,
Hope had mourning on,
Trenched with tears, carved with cares,
Hope was twelve hours gone.


Addendum: For those who have expressed the view that this is an off-topic post for this forum, I respect your view. But I also respectfully suggest you have probably not spent the weekend of the March in Washington, DC. The entire Church is there on Vigil. You have never seen so many nuns in your life. 1100 cardinals, bishops, priests, and seminarians processed into the Mass on Thursday evening. There is music and singing and preaching of very high quality, and many hundreds of young people are there to experience it. There are vocations centers to promote priestly and religious life. It has become one of the great pilgrimage moments of our times. The reason is that the rights of the unborn have been part of the Catholic faith since its earliest years. The anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision is a day of prayer and fasting in the US by liturgical law. It is not political; it is perennial.