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The 'Walk For Life" 2008

A week ago, the West Coast Walk For Life 2008 happened along the Embarcadero and through the Wharf and it was such a wonderful event! The sun was shining, the crowd of marchers was larger than ever (25,000!) and it was a terrific testimony to the goodness of life and family, to the joyful support and strength that happens when so many different people team up for the common good. Because the common good of society is definitively resting on our ability to desire and welcome children and to foster a positive climate for putting families first. And that is what it is really about. About having a vision of life that goes farther than our own belly button. And to think that there were so many young people marching, so many beautiful young women, it brings a smile to my face just to remember them. The whole event was barely covered in the local press because they don't understand it, but that's OK, being under the radar can sometime greatly help gather momentum till the tipping point.



Walk For Life 2008 #3

It was truly a blessing to have such a sunny day because it sure was raining the week before and it sure has been stormy ever since so I was thankful for the clear sky that day. I walked for a while next to a group singing beautiful and haunting songs in Spanish. I ran into friends, I took pictures, I marched and I sang along. I tried to go up through the crowd to the very beginning of the march and it took me a while, I was only able to catch up with them at the Wharf.

Along the way there were some protesters although their numbers get smaller every year. There must have been less than 500 of them. When you think that 25,000 people marched that day by the waterfront, a few hundreds of pro-abortion demonstrators is not that many. But they were very virulent and very vocal. Again, as they have done before, obscenities and insults were hurled at the marchers. There was a group of young lesbians vehemently pro-choice and making lewd gestures and I wondered what was their point. Were they trying to shock us? And I was thinking as I was passing a couple of them kissing publicly with defiance that the one thing that is truly separating us is that I am so grateful for having had a baby, for the wonderful chance at motherhood that I got, because it is such an exciting and challenging adventure, such a beautiful opportunity for growth and for love, because the whole issue is about love, about true love, and that there is nothing better that I could wish for these young girls but to experience a change of heart one day and shed their pro-choice stand like one discards an old and useless shirt.

So I kept going and I squeezed by the great crowd and I finally got to the beginning of the line just as it was turning and going up to Ghirardelli Square. I had a great view of the first marchers and I took pictures of the young women holding the Walk For Life banner. They certainly looked like a happy and healthy, beaming and assertive group of young women. And I stood at the corner and I watched as the marchers go by and I saw so many kids and so many families pass by that it was mesmerizing; I saw people pushing other people in wheelchairs; I saw banners of schools and colleges and parishes, in English and in Spanish; I saw many Catholic posters and religious pictures, many people of faith, singing and praying; I heard the rosary being said in English and in Spanish; I saw entire families holding hands, I saw nuns in habit walk by and smile, I saw elderly women walking with difficulties but determined to push along and finish the walk, I saw couples in love holding hands, little kids running around and pushing their sibling in baby carriages; I saw priests and brothers walk by and chanting; I saw puzzled tourists on the sidewalk staring, some of them smiling, one even asked whether the chocolate factory was around the corner and someone pointed him in the right direction. I felt that the great stream of humanity in all its beauty and weakness had just walked by me and I was elated to witness it and to be one of its member.

It felt like such a special and blessed moment.




Walk For Life 2008 #1 Walk For Life 2008 #6 Walk For Life 2008 #2



Walk For Life 2008 #7 Walk For Life 2008 #5 Walk For Life 2008 #4


The moral and spiritual strength of a woman is joined to her awareness that God entrusts the human being to her in a a special way. Of course, God entrusts every human being to each and every other human being. But this entrusting concerns women in a special way - precisely by reason of their femininity - and this in a particular way determines their vocation.
(On the dignity and vocation of Women). JPII
My opposition to abortion springs from a conviction that it is ugly and degrading to women. Years spent as a natural child birth teacher, devising my own method of pain relief and becoming a homebirth mom myself, wrought in me a deep conviction that pregnancy and birth are a healthy process that should be, as much as possible, left alone. Pregnancy and birth link together women all over the world and throughout all time, that earthy vital process is the most elemental symbol of woman's strength. Disrupting it by thrusting tools deep into her body is as obscene as pouring dirty motor oil into a mountain lake. I oppose abortion because it violates women more deeply than rape, a more hideous violation because it brings grisly death into the very house of life.
("Real choices" by Frederica Mathewes-Green).

In order to spread joy, joy needs to reign in the family. Peace and war start within one's own home. If we really want peace for the world, let us start by loving one another within our families. We will thus have Christ's joy, which is our strength. Sometimes it is hard for us to smile at one another. It is often difficult for the husband to smile at his wife or for the wife to smile at her husband. It is sometimes difficult for me to smile at Christ.
(Mother Teresa of Calcutta).
We know that all families are jeopardized and the entire human race is threatened when women despise and refuse God's greatest gift to woman: motherhood. We know that there can be no hope for true justice when women refuse to accept their right and responsibility to transmit to a new generation the moral and ethical principles that are the true foundation of any just society.
(Helen Hull Hitchcock, Director of Women for Faith and Family)
Choose Life!
"It is not good that the man should be alone" Gen 2:18. From the texts that narrate the creation of man, there emerges how in God's plan the couple constitutes "the first form of communion between persons". The family is presented as the cradle of life and love, as the sanctuary of life. §213
The priority of the family over society and over the State must be affirmed. §214 (Compendium of the social doctrine of the Church. )

Copyright 2008 Michele Szekely

 


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