Thousands Now at March for Life
Thousands of tristate Catholics are participating in the March for Life in Washington DC today, including the bishops of Cincinnati and Covington.
More than 1000 people from Covington, including the diocese’s seminarians, are at the March, according to Faye Roch, Director of the Diocese of Covington’s Pro-Life Office. Nineteen buses set out from Covington, eight of them from the dioceses’s high schools and the rest from youth groups and from one adult and family group. Four of the high school buses are from Newport Central Catholic, which sent about 180 students and their chaperones.
This morning most of those travelers will gather at St. Dominic Church in downtown Washington, where Bishop Foys will say Mass and the NewCath choir will sing. “After Mass the Diocese of Covington will meet and march together in solidarity to witness on the sanctity of life,” says Roch.
Covington’s high schools will all hold a special prayer service at 9 am to pray the rosary together in solidarity with each other and with the March.
Archdiocese of Cincinnati spokesman Dan Andriacco says that more than 1600 area people are at the March — 1450 who have signed up for the Archdiocese’s Mass and rally, and 200 who will attend only the March.
Students from more than 15 high schools, four colleges and universities, several youth groups, and a variety of elementary schools are attending, as are people from numerous parishes. Colleen Gerke, head of the Archdiocese’s Family and Respect Life Office, and her husband Deacon John Gerke are also attending, as are about 40 seminarians from Mount St. Mary’s Seminary of the West.
St. Ursula Academy (Walnut Hills) sent 25 students, according to school spokesperson Jill Cahill. The school’s Life Club held a prayer service in the St. Ursula Chapel on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade.
Students from UD and Miami University are going, as are 40 students with Xavier University Students for Life and 17 students from the College of Mount St. Joseph (Delhi). Jill Eichhorn, spokesperson for Mount St. Joe, says the school’s Lions for Life organization is also taking three chaperones and two adult relatives, for a total of 22.
Most of the travelers for the Archdiocese met for a sendoff at Good Shepherd parish in Montgomery Thursday night and attended Mass and a youth rally in Washington Friday morning.
Area people and groups also attended the March on their own or with other organizations. Area pro-life activist Bryan Kemper, who heads the Stand True pro-life youth organization and is Youth Outreach Director for the national group Priests for Life, attended with Priests for Life, where he helped lead an interfaith youth rally.
“Today is the start of the second generation to live and die under the shadow of Roe vs Wade,” Kemper wrote in a blog post before setting out for the March. “Today I give my solemn word that I will not rest; I will give my life until my dying breath to make sure we never reach a third generation. While this date will always be known as one of the darkest dates in our nation’s history, one day we will celebrate a day of light. We will celebrate the day the evil of our age was defeated and the abolition of abortion was achieved.”
While many people from the Archdiocese of Indianapolis travel to Washington for the March (last year several hundred went), the Archdiocese holds its own observation and walk. This year Archbishop Tobin will celebrate a special noon Mass at SS. Peter and Paul Cathedral, a “solemn pro-life observance [that] will focus on prayers to end the abortion holocaust, which has killed more than 53 million unborn babies,” according to the Criterion newspaper. A short pro-life walk will follow the Mass. Last year more than 900 people participated in the event.
Cincinnati-area readers who would like to commemorate the day are invited to a “Mini March for Life” from noon until 2 pm in front of the Planned Parenthood abortion building in Mt. Auburn, and/or to any church in the Diocese of Covington. Bishop Foys declared today a day of prayer and penance throughout the diocese. All churches will be open for prayer and at least one hour of Eucharistic Adoration, and ten churches will hold a Holy Hour tonight at 7 pm. For a complete schedule, click here.
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