March for Life pilgrimage Jan. 16-21 in D.C.
By Bonnie Toombs
The first March for Life was held one year after the 1973 Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision that recognized a right to abortion. Subsequent marches have been held on or near the Jan. 22 anniversary every year since.
Those who attended last year’s event noticed a significant difference, there was a feeling of joy and fellowship. It was a very uplifting time for those who are concerned with protecting the most vulnerable, the unborn.
The young people listened with a new attention as Vice-President Mike Pence told those gathered that the Trump administration is determined to advance the fight against abortion. “We will not grow weary,” Pence said in a ten-minute address to the throng at the monument. “We will not rest, until we restore a culture of life in America for ourselves and our posterity.”
The Catholic Church has been at the center of the protection of all human life from conception to natural death. We proclaim that human life is a precious gift from God; that each person who receives this gift has responsibilities toward God, self, and others; and that society, through its laws and social institutions, must protect and nurture human life at every stage of its existence.
These beliefs flow from ordinary reason and from our faith’s constant witness that “life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception” (Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, no. 51) – a teaching that has been a constant part of the Christian message since the apostolic age.
Father Josh Evans said: “The March for Life is a great event where we gather in Washington, D.C. as a diocese and reaffirm our belief that every life is worth living. Uniting with this singular purpose, we march with hundreds of thousands of people throughout our great nation to stand up for what we believe is the truth about life.
“We march for its goodness. We march for its beauty and speak for those who find themselves on the margins of society. If you’ve never gone, go! It is truly a life changing experience!”
By taking part in this event – or if we cannot join the Pilgrimage to Washington, D.C., then in similar events in our own cities – we can stand before God and say, “I did speak out; I was not passive in the face of the greatest injustice of our day.” Going on the march provides for the youth of our diocese a chance to raise their voices in protest, to be witnesses of faith, to live their faith in action.
Toombs is director of the Respect Life and Social Justice Office.

Deadline Nov. 10
The registration deadline for the National March for Life to Washington, D.C., is Nov. 10. The cost is $395 per person.
Download forms at or call Bonnie @ 316 269-3935 for more information.