Look at the Happy People!

As thousands take to the streets in Washington D.C. for the 39th annual March for Life, in protest to the the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision that allowed for 54 million abortions, President Obama released the following statement:

“As we mark the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we must remember that this Supreme Court decision not only protects a woman’s health and reproductive freedom, but also affirms a broader principle: that government should not intrude on private family matters. I remain committed to protecting a woman’s right to choose and this fundamental constitutional right. While this is a sensitive and often divisive issue- no matter what our views, we must stay united in our determination to prevent unintended pregnancies, support pregnant woman and mothers, reduce the need for abortion, encourage healthy relationships, and promote adoption. And as we remember this historic anniversary, we must also continue our efforts to ensure that our daughters have the same rights, freedoms, and opportunities as our sons to fulfill their dreams.”

Steven Ertelt and Elizabeth Scalia have some good insights on their posts regarding the president’s remarks.

On my post, Walk for Life West Coast 2012 in pictures, it is encouraging to see a so many people – especially a lot of young people – who too are seeking to ‘fulfill their dreams’ by coming out to stand by what they believe. And a comment hits home as to why the March for Life movement has been so effective:

“I have been at every west coast walk for life. Since I cannot walk the walk any more, I sat and watched those who did as they passed by on Larkin and turned down Market St.. A happier group of people I have never seen. Laughing, singing, praying, pushing strollers, wheelchairs. We are family. I wanted to call to negative passers-by, “hey! look at the happy people! Maybe you should check them out!” You are wonderful! A model of Goodness, Kindness, of Christ and His Blessed Mother.. God bless you all and Mary love you.”

Which brings up the stark contrast between the pro-life camp showing up in the thousands:

credit: Karl Mondon of Bay City News

and the pro-abortion camp that is, well, not in the thousands:

Justin Herman Plaza, SF, 11:19am || credit: Walk for Life West Coast Blog

But beyond the numbers the stark contrast comes with what the scriptures refer to the fruits of the spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).

Walking shoulder to shoulder down Market Street, despite the early morning chill still in the air, my heart was warm, to be in the presence of a joy and peacefulness that filled the air. It was almost intoxicating, to the point the small bands of protesters we passed by were hardly noticed.

The evidence of these ‘fruits’ in one’s life, points to the presence of the Holy Spirit working in him.  Where we see the fruits manifested, God’s presence is there.

May the Lord bless each person who took a stand for life in all its stages, from the San Francisco Bay to the Washington Mall. May their voice continue to resound through the whole world, and may God be with them, that they will continue to reflect joy to the world.

Walk for Life West Coast 2012 in Pictures

January 22 is the anniversary of the Roe vs Wade decision to make abortion legal in the United States, and this weekend marks that anniversary with the annual March for Life Convention in Washington D.C., concluding tomorrow with the 39th Annual March for Life on the National Mall. Events are taking place all over the country this weekend, to be in solidarity with the voices being heard in Washington.

Saturday, I was privileged to participate in the Walk for Life – West Coast, arriving on bus number 32 (out of more than 200 buses reported!) in San Francisco. As Our Lady of Lourdes Parishioners began getting off the buses to assemble the signs for the rally and walk, the sky threatened rain with a light drizzle that kept on for half-an-hour, but it could not dampen our spirits, and in the end, the Lord gave us a beautiful sunny day to testify to Life!

While waiting for the events to get underway, I decided to walk around and capture some of the signs I liked:

Unity in diversity was a sub-theme of the day:

My new friend London
and our very own Bella - Babies are Hipsters too!
One of my favorites - "Yeah Babies"

And some ‘stars’ were on the scene to encourage us:

Our own Bishop of Sacramento Diocese, Rev. Jaime Soto, seen here with our youth of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church
Father Frank Pavone happened to be waiting at a crosswalk with us for the light to change.
credit: Karl Mondon of Bay City News
And, lots and lots of people out there to support both the mother and the child.

The day was a successful one, with some reports of over 50,000 coming into San Francisco for the walk.

Next year will be the 40th anniversary of Roe vs Wade. As one of the speakers said, ’40 years is significant in the Scriptures. Drastic shifts happen.’

Let us pray that this year begins the ‘drastic shift’ back to a culture that embraces life in all its stages.

Update: St. Blogustine has A great collection of photos from the March for Life – Washington DC

The Anchoress posted many great blog posts on the sanctity of life.