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February 1, 1991     The Message
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February 1, 1991
 

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The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana February I 1991 March for Life Southwestern Indiana teens among 25,000 marching in Washington Concerns about the Persian Gulf war muted but did not silence pro-life marches and rallies held in a frigid Washington and around the country to mark the 18th an- niversary of the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing abor- tion. Speakers at many events mentioned the war, but most seemed to agree xith the assess- ment of Bishop Thomas V. Dai- ly of Brooklyn, N.Y., that the war on behalf of the unborn will continue long after the Persian Gulf conflict ends. "We are talking not about a potential loss of life, but what is an admitted fact, loss of life in the womb," he said at a Jan. 19 pro-life awards ceremony in his diocese. No war or any event in history "could rival the destruction of human life" caused by abortion, he added. Some of the signs displayed at the march in Washington blended concerns for the crisis in the Gulf and the crisis for the unborn, according to Connie Anders, a teacher from Memorial High School, Evansville. "Stop the war on the un- born," was one such sign, Anders recalled. Anders was one of four teachers who traveled with 31 students from the Evansville area t0 the march in Washington. The other teachers were James Redman and Joan Steffenhagen from Memorial, and William Zurstadt from Mater Dei High School. Fifteen students from Memorial, eight from Mater Dei, and pro-life students from public schools in the Evansville area left Sunday, Jan 20, on a chartered bus. They returned early the following Wednesday. Anders said this has been her 15th trip to Washington on the anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision. "It's my own way to stand up and speak out for those who have no voice," said Anders. "It's also very good for the students who attend," com- mented Anders. She said the students who participate are pro-life when they go, but mak- ing a public statement helps them to develop and mature in their commitment. At the Jan. 22 March for Life in Washington, organizer Nellie J. Gray told a crowd of some 25,000 shivering in below-zero wind chills that "They told us we wouldn't sur- vive. ' ' ra' Jill Ann White Admlnletrator Hwy. 57 So, Washington, iN 812-254-4516 irie Village Living Center BLOCK - CRUSH - CUBE WHOLESALE & RETAIL Ph. (812) 425-8191 GEORGE MOLL, Owner Delegations from some states were reportedly smaller than usual and at least one large con- tingent -- Missouri Right to Life -- stayed away. Loretto Wagner, coordinator of Missouri's Life Caravan, canceled the caravan of 1,000 or more people, saying, "We feel it would be inappropriate at this time to divert our nation's attention." "We're also praying for the men and women in uniform," Miss Gray said, but of greatest concern were the "body bags of little babies" who were aborted. The march is held annually in Washington on the anniver- sary of the Supreme Court's 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision legalizing abortion. The weather was not nearly as bad as the heavy snows in 1987 which cut the turnout to 5,000. But this year's atten- dance, given by Miss Gray as 50,000 and by police as 25,000, was below last year's police estimate of 75,000. Organizers cited fear of terrorism as a fac- tor. Signs linking abortion and war abounded: "Save (Iraqi President) Saddam Hussein ... kill our unborn?"; "Saddam is a killer? We murder millions every year. Save our children;" "Hey media -- the worst war casualties are in the U.S.A.: 4,000 every day; .... No killing in the Gulf, no killing in the womb; .... Abort Iraq not babies." Once again, President Bush telephoned with a message of support for the marchers, call- ing them "courageous and determined Americans." He said that largely because of the pro-life movement, January has become a month for reflection and rejuvenation of efforts to protect unborn babies. "I'm proud my voice is a part of the growing chorus saying 'Choose life,'" Bush said. He added that the government and private sector must become more involved in encouraging alternatives to abortion such as adoption. At a National Prayer Vigil for Life preceding the march, Car- dinal Jdhn J. O'Connor of New York tied the war and that day's holiday observance of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birth- day to pro-life issues. In his homily during the vigil Mass at the Basilica of the Na- tional Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the cardinal reminded the congregation that God loves "everyone ... caught up in this war" and that "all of them are made in the image and likeness of God." At another Mass during the vigil, Cardinal Bernard F. Law of Boston urged pro-lifers "not to grow lazy" and to work hard for an end to abortion. "We must have courage to defend the gift of life," he said. After the march, Cardinal O'Connor at a special "Seminarians for Life" Mass in Washington told seminarians that Catholic pro-life leaders for too long have neglected how important is "the power of Christ" in the abortion strug- gle. He asked seminarians to maintain their "sense of urgen- Catholic University sends thanks Father William J. Byron, S.J., president of the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., has written to the Diocese of Evansville to express thanks for a contribu- tion of $4,200 to the annual diocesan collection for CUA. The people of the diocese "are giving us more than money," said Father Byron. "Their contributions and prayers also give us encourage- ment to deepen our commit- ment to our mission of service to the Church through research and teaching, especially at the graduate level, he continued. Catholic University of America was established by the bishops of the United States in 1887. It is the only American university with ecclesiastical faculties granting canonical degrees in theology, philosophy and canon law. fl Amedc00n National Bank Bicknell - Sandborn V!ncennes Drive-in Facilities - Member F.D.I.C. A Full Service Bank I FOR COMPLETE ELECTRICAL SERVICE FISCHER ELECTRIC INC. RT. 1 ST. ANTHONY i "Funeral Pre.Planning Since 1940" Miller & Miller 424-9274 cy" about abortion after they are ordained. Around the United States, more than 100 events were scheduled to mark the anniver- sary of Roe vs. Wade, according to the Nationa'] Right to Life Committee, based in Washington. The events included rallies and marches, showers for new mothers and pregnant women in need, candlelight vigils, breakfasts and luncheons with legislators, memorial services for aborted fetuses, life chains and, in Brighton, Mich., a blood drive. "When we accept violence, war itself can be taken for granted," said Archbishop William H. Keeler of Baltimore at a Jan. 20 Mass. "Abortion in particular blunts a sense of the sacredness of human life." In Knoxville, Tenn., Jan. 20, some 5,000 people of various denominations joined in a "life chain" stretching almost 10 miles. Each person carried a sign bearing the message, "Abortion Kills Children." Similar chains were formed by large groups in New Orleans and from Naples to Bradenton in Florida. At a pro-life prayer service Jan. 20 in Newfield, N.J., Bishop James T. McHugh of Camden said that even if Roe vs. Wade were overturned in the courts it would not necessarily reverse the social mindset on abortion. "I don't think any one new law is going to precisely change anything, because you will always have some who choose to ignore the new law and some who will reinterpret the new law," he said. In Indianapolis, Barbara Willke, wife of National Right to Life Committee president Dr. John Willke, urged participants in a Jan. 20 rally at the Indiana War Memorial to continue their battle to stop the war on the un- born. "This type of war has no headlifies, no (network) coverage every night, no blow- by-blow descriptions," she said. "Pro-life groups all over the country have come forth in a time of need, in a time of war, when they're needed to fight the war on the unborn. And what have they done? They have educated, educated,. educated." In Washington Jan. 22, Willke said his and other pro- life organizations were united in their opposition to RU-486, the so-called "abortion pill," and their determination to keep it out of the United States. Catholic News Service and a Message report provided in[or- mation [or the above story. James Jett & Associates, Inc. life  health  home  IRA retirement planning 4 73--4005 514 S. Green River Rcl. Evansville t IN 47715 Are You Interested... 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