Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
May 18, 2009
March defends the sanctity of life
Speakers advocated for all aspects of life, opposing abortion, euthanasia, assisted suicide and reproductive technologies
Archbishop Richard Smith
The Canadian flag on the steps of the Legislature was at half-mast, in remembrance of aborted babies.
“Before all else we must work to ensure that the message of life takes deep root in the family — the natural environment for the procreation and nurture of life,” Smith said in his talk.
“Beyond the family, the message of life must be carried to our schools and universities, and to the medical and scientific communities.
“It must be conveyed in the many and varied forms of modern communications media.
“Wherever there is opportunity to speak in defence of life we must not fail to do so.”
As this pro-life message is carried to society, there are those who will seek to marginalize it, but we must not yield to this, he said.
“At stake are lives of unborn children and many other vulnerable persons who are unable to speak for themselves. We readily speak for them, not only for their sake but also for that of the common good. We must not fail to speak out against any injustice perpetrated against a fellow human being,” said Smith.
Representatives from many groups affiliated with the pro-life movement were also present, including the Knights of Columbus, Pregnancy Crisis Centre and University of Alberta Pro-Life.
“Basically our job at the university is to get the message out there that an unborn child is worthy of life, and we’re out here to keep spreading that message,” said Laura Miller, with the U of A Pro-Life.
“You don’t have to be of faith to also be pro-life. I think science has shown that an unborn child meets all of the definitions of a human being.”
K of C State Deputy Wally Streit spoke of a specific and precious gift of life – his grandchild. His daughter, who lives in Burnaby, B.C., is pregnant, and Streit watched via computer the ultrasound of his daughter’s womb and her child inside.
“The baby did mini-somersaults and responded to a cough by Lisa. Ladies and gentlemen, how could anyone view an ultrasound of a baby and not be convinced that life is precious and sacred?” said Streit, whose rhetorical question was answered by tremendous applause.
Bishop Henry challenged the claim of some that the state should not legislate morality.
“Let me remind all of you that we legislate morality all the time. We have laws against murder, against rape, against physical and sexual assault, against theft, against libel and slander.
“The moral evils that violate the rights of persons must be curtailed.
“We must protect human life in our legislation.”
Taking a neutral stance on abortion is impossible, Henry said, and a person will either defend human life or attack it.
Abortion is not a question of faith vs. science and reason, he said. Science supports that a fetus is alive.
Every pre-born child has his or her own individual DNA, blood type, beating heart at 18 days and brainwaves at 43 days. The pre-born child becomes more and more sensitive to sound and pain.
“All that is needed is time to grow. Clearly the legalist’s view of the pre-born child as a simple extension of the mother is no longer valid in any shape or form,” said Henry.
Rachael Durocher carried “Defend Life” placards with a small group of friends.
“This is all about remembrance of life, protesting abortion,” Durocher said of the march. “We get complacent about these things, so it’s kind of nice to have a day like this where we can bring attention to it.”
Among those present at the march were St. Paul Bishop Luc Bouchard, Bishop David Motiuk of the Ukrainian Eparchy, Minister of Sustainable Resource Development Ted Morton, WCR columnist Mark Pickup, and chairperson of the Alberta March for Life Association, Sister Elizabeth Coulombe.
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