I join the March for Life in Washington with my prayers. May God help us respect all life, especially the most vulnerable
— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) January 22, 2014
Update: Went to the March with the kids. The below-zero windchill nearly scared me off, but I rallied and decided, "bring it, Winter." It stands to reason that the crowds were diminished due to the cold, but you sure couldn't tell it. We were at the head of the line this year, and as we were departing, the throng behind us just kept coming and coming and coming. Pro-lifers ain't wimps, whatever else you might say.
The new head of March4Life is taking pains to modernize it in a good way -- she wants it to have impact beyond visuals (and the spiritual warfare aspect of that many people praying for hours at a time), and she made an effort to get more Evangelicals involved this year. In my portion of the March I didn't see so many new Church groups, but there did seem to be more Jews. There've always been a couple of Rabbis for Life, but this year there was a group flying an Israeli flag and another with colorful "L'Chaim!" posters. And I got a chuckle out of this:
Secular Pro-Life: "For the embryology textbook tells me so."
(For those of you over The Big Pond, that's a play on the lyric of what I assume is an American Christian children's song: Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so....).
It was the usual pro-life homecoming atmosphere. Lots of praying and singing and jubilation and hugs for friends you haven't seen in a while. At the Supreme Court there were maybe a dozen pro abortion protestors awaiting us. Most of them had that familiar purple "Keep Abortion Legal" sign, but some had handmade signs that were so vulgar it hurt. There was one girl who looked so young and sweet and innocent and the sign she was carrying made me feel sick. It is hard to believe there's not an element of the demonic involved when people make themselves so base.
Eldest Weed has reached the stage where he questions everything and is cynical in that kind of low-grade teenage way. But he doesn't need any lectures from me about which path leads to emotional happiness and which leads to hatred and bitterness. He saw the tens of thousands rejoicing and the dozens cursing. All he said was, "You stay classy, Planned Parenthood," but when I said I'd stopped to pray for that girl because it made my heart ache to see someone in such emotional pain, he completely agreed.
And then, le sigh....the President felt the need to weigh in on this Holy Anniversary of Roe v. Wade. I am not exaggerating when I say it strains my capacity for charity to read or listen to this man, so I defer to this great First Things piece, which notices more than 8 lies in the President's single paragraph statement.
As a palate cleanser, or brain bleach, or just the refreshment of someone not talking smack: Archbishop Chaput's homily from Mass at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception last night:
Today is the forty-first anniversary of Roe v. Wade, which effectively legalized abortion on demand. It’s a time to look back and look ahead. The abortion struggle of the past four decades teaches a very useful lesson. Evil talks a lot about “tolerance” when it’s weak. When evil is strong, real tolerance gets pushed out the door. And the reason is simple. Evil cannot bear the counter-witness of truth. It will not coexist peacefully with goodness, because evil insists on being seen as right, and worshiped as being right. Therefore, the good must be made to seem hateful and wrong.
Seventy years ago, abortion was a crime against humanity. Four decades ago, abortion supporters talked about the “tragedy” of abortion and the need to make it safe and rare. Not anymore. Now abortion is not just a right, but a right that claims positive dignity, the license to demonize its opponents and the precedence to interfere with constitutional guarantees of freedom of speech, assembly, and religion. We no longer tolerate abortion. We venerate it as a totem.
Boom! That was just the opening grafs! Well, whatevs. We aren't going to shut up.
(Actually he said this as Cardinal in 2005)