BIRMINGHAM, Alabama, Jan. 22, 2013—Being thousands of miles away from Washington D.C., where the annual National March for Life is held, does stop the rest of the pro-life citizens of the United States from marking the significance of January 22 in the history of the fight for a culture of life. Hundreds of residents of some towns in Alabama took part in a pro-life march in Birmingham Saturday.
Anabelle Toledo-Hazard, a Filipino living in the US for 11 years now, related that the march started with an 8 a.m. mass at the Cathedral of St. Paul’s, which was packed with people, with Birmingham Bishop Robert Baker celebrating.
“Then they walked to the park and assembled there, joined by more people, more big families with little kids and the priests from EWTN and some Dominican nuns. They walked around for six blocks, passing by the closed-down Planned Parenthood [facility],” she said, adding that her in-laws told her about what took place in the event.
Hazard, active in pro-life witness advocacy for quite a while, had originally planned to participate but could not make it to the Saturday morning march.
“Since it was an ecumenical event, most people walked silently but my in-laws were next to a group of Franciscans from EWTN who were saying the rosary so they said the rosary as they walked,” she added.
After the march – one of many across the nation being held this week to mark 40 years of legal abortion, which has resulted in the death of over 50 million babies – the crowd convened for a 30-minute program in which Baker, other clergy, a speaker from the Evangelical community, and several others from pro-life organizations around the Birmingham diocese shared messages.
The bishop reminded everyone that much more could be done in the fight against abortion and pointed out President Barack Obama’s words uttered recently – ironic though they were – about the need to protect innocent lives.
“I’ve been active in the local life chain, where pro-life advocates stand outside the courthouse and pray the rosary and then later hold signs at a street corner in silence,” Hazard explained. “Mainly, I do it because Our Lady has constantly said abortion is the greatest evil in this generation, and I always take my children so that they can also be active as they grow older.”
The crime of abortion was legalized as a result of the US Supreme Court decision Roe vs. Wade, handed down on January 22, 1973. Pro-lifers got to work soon after and a year later, the first March for Life took place with roughly 20,000 people congregating in front of the Supreme Court in the nation’s capital to express their protest of the infamous decision, which they have said manifests discrimination against unborn children who are entitled to the most basic human right to life.
This year’s March for Life in Washington D.C. will take place on Jan. 25, with more than last year’s estimated 500,000 participants expected, as this year marks the 40th anniversary of the legalization of abortion in America. (CBCP for Life)