If there was one thing that marked this year’s March for Life in Washington, D.C., it was the prevailing sense of resolution. Bad weather forecasts, a hostile legislature and pro-abortion health care bills all seemed to stiffen rather than dampen resistance. Even pro-abortion commentators have had to admit that this issue is not going away soon.
The January 22 March has become the nation’s premier pro-life event with leaders from across the country making the trek to make their voices heard.
This year they were joined by throngs of people packing the mall, streets and sidewalks forming a veritable sea of what many estimate to be as many as 300,000 Americans. This 37th annual March was ably organized by March for Life president Nellie Gray and featured as speakers, bishops, senators and congressmen.
The overwhelming presence was only matched by the underwhelming coverage of the liberal media which always have a hard time finding such throngs and seem to have special radar to detect the few pro-abortion protesters that show up along the March’s route.
The massive anti-abortion national groundswell shows no sign of going away. Pro-life marchers are young, determined and active. Their banners and signs were colorful, big and plentiful. Also noteworthy was the strong Catholic presence ranging from parochial school children to 45 cardinals, archbishops and bishops. Pro-life America was all present and accounted for as they filled Constitution Avenue and headed toward Capitol Hill.
The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) was present with a contingent of over one hundred and twenty members, supporters and friends, who carried banners and eighteen-foot TFP standards and distributed this year’s TFP statement: “An Appeal for Insistence.” (Click here to read the statement)
The American TFP was especially pleased to have as its guest of honor, Prince Bertrand of Orleans-Braganza who participated in the March and later spoke at the March’s Rose Dinner.
The TFP contingent included four members, wearing the TFP ceremonial habit, which served as an honor guard for a Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima. The entire student body of the TFP-staffed St. Louis de Montfort Academy of Herndon, Penn. was also present. The American TFP was also pleased to host contingents from its TFP sister organizations in Italy and France.
About 15 participants at a TFP university student seminar joined the march as part of the program. As in past marches, the TFP’s Holy Choirs of Angels marching band played a selection of patriotic hymns and American marches. The ensemble included brass, fifes, drums and bagpipes.
The theme of the TFP message was an appeal to insistence. The statement explained why the pro-abortionists insist so much on promoting abortion. They know that there is more at stake than just a question of “women’s rights.”
“Take abortion away and the whole edifice of the Sexual Revolution comes crashing to the ground,” the TFP statement affirms. “That is why the promoters of abortion are so radically insistent. They realize that every limitation of abortion – even in its most horrific expressions – is an affirmation that some kind of morality exists to limit their unfettered quest for ‘happiness.’”
Protests All Over the Country
The March for Life in the nation’s capital was not the only pro-life event but rather the largest of many similar events held nationwide to protest the sad and tragic anniversary of Roe v. Wade.
Among the most dynamic of these smaller demonstrations was California’s Walk for Life held in San Francisco on January 23. At least 35,000 pro-life walkers filled the city’s waterfront, which, despite the rain, was the largest crowd that ever attended the event. Many TFP Supporters, led by TFP member Philip Calder, also joined the crowd.
Insistent Action Will Triumph
Over the years, the pro-life movement has passed through many storms. Amid that suffering, the movement has developed and matured. The result is a solidity, stamina and dynamism that cannot fail to impress.
What is needed now is insistence. In a sense, the battle now is one of who will resist longer. The youthful protesters in Washington contrast well with the thinning ranks of the aging pro-abortion radicals. However, what is more important in determining the outcome of this great struggle are the insistent prayers that call upon heaven’s aid. It is this irresistible insistence that cannot fail to move the maternal heart of Our Lady who will fulfill her promise at Fatima and bring about the triumph of her Immaculate Heart.