One of the largest gatherings of people in Washington, D.C. is the annual March for Life that takes place on January 22, the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision of 1973 which legalized abortion on demand in our country. The original organizers could never have imagined it would be as large as it is today! Every January 22 hundreds of thousands of individuals gather at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. to serve as witnesses of the 55 million babies killed through abortion. Over the last 20 years, I have travelled to the March for Life nearly every year. One of the most positive things to be seen is that there is a steady decrease in the age of the participants. The largest group of participants is youth or young adults who are zealous about this cause. They realize that this is really a human rights issue. Further, according to a Gallup Poll published in May 2012, 50% of Americans now identify themselves as “pro-life.” I see these as very positive signs. However, one can look at other surveys that show that it is still a fact that 1/3 of all pregnancies in the U.S. end up with an unborn baby being destroyed; murdered. That equates to 1.5 million deaths per year, or one every 23 seconds.
There were over 400,000 people at the March for Life last year and, although I have not heard any official numbers of this year’s March for Life, I can tell you that it was a sea of people that seemed to stretch on for miles! This is the main reason for my letter. Sadly, there was very little if any secular coverage of this enormous event. Yet, hundreds of thousands of people convene at our nation’s capital each year from all across the country for one reason – to let it be known that through the harsh cold and often snowy conditions present in Washington, D.C., hundreds of thousands march for those whose lives were deemed invaluable, whose rights were silenced, and whose sanctity was discarded. Yet, complaints about the weather conditions are few and far between, because each individual knows that through life outside of the womb, they were given an opportunity millions of individuals never realized. It is my prayer that what is the most dangerous place for a human person will once again become the safest place on earth for a human person, namely the womb of a mother!
Father Timothy J. Grassi