Laura Keener, Editor.
Pilgrims from the Diocese of Covington participated, Jan. 24, in the 47th annual March for Life in Washington, D.C.
The March for Life is a peaceful demonstration opposing the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which made abortion on demand legal in the United States and has polarized Americans into two political blocs — pro-choice (a women’s right to abortion) and pro-life (an unborn child’s right to life). Each year at the March for Life thousands of Americans give voice to the voiceless demanding that U.S. laws restore protection to the unborn.
From the diocese, about 300 people attended this year’s March for Life including students from Bishop Brossart High School, Alexandria; Covington Catholic High School, Park Hills; Covington Latin School, Covington; Holy Cross District High School, Latonia; Notre Dame Academy, Park Hills; St. Henry District High School, Erlanger; St. Patrick High School, Maysville; Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights; and Thomas More University, Crestview Hills.
In his homily at Mass prior to the march, at St. Dominic Church, Washington, D.C., Bishop Roger Foys read extensively from an article, “The Truth About Abortion,” written 30 years ago and available still online at KeepBelieving.com. Despite the age of the article, its content, Bishop Foys said, rings true today.
“I think it goes without saying that abortion is a difficult issue to talk about. It is difficult because it is almost impossible to find someone who is neutral on the subject. It is the most emotionally-divisive issue in America today,” Bishop Foys read.
“This is still true today. You look at our world, you look at our country, sadly and unfortunately you look at our Church and there are divisions,” Bishop Foys said. “People taking up sides, angry at each other, holding grudges against each other —that’s not right.”
The article indicated that many are divided on the morality of abortion. After describing the developmental milestones of a fetus — at conception the baby has its own set of genes and chromosomes; before implantation the sex is determined; 19 days after conception the eyes begin to develop; after 24 days the heart begins beating; at 30 days and a 1/4 inch long the embryo has a brain, eyes, ears, mouth, kidneys and liver; 35 days fingers are formed; 40 days brainwaves are detected — Bishop Foys said, “I defy anyone to say that killing such a baby is not morally wrong. It’s not just a blob, it’s not just some mass we are going to destroy and discard. It is a human being, as the Psalmist said, ‘knit by God in its mother’s womb.’”
Since 1973, Bishop Foys said, that 61,683,903 children have been aborted in the United States and 1,562,566,150 babies have perished in the womb worldwide.
“My friends, that should frighten us,” he said. “We know the truth, so what do we do?”
Bishop Foys offered three directives — pray, be informed and get involved.
“Those poor unborn children cannot speak for themselves, so we speak for them — not with vengeance, not with hatred but with love and prayer and patience and understanding. We should not be a cause for more division — there’s enough of that in our world and in our country and in our Church. A house divided cannot stand, Jesus said,” Bishop Foys said.
Bishop Foys ended his homily thanking the pilgrims for attending the March for Life and encouraging them in their support of the unborn.
“We must not give up, we must not be silent — we must be a witness. This is why we are here today, to be a witness. We are not here to protest, or harangue, or to discredit. We are here to be a witness to life. To show people, especially those who have the ability to change this law, that there are still people in our country … who believe that God is indeed the author of all life. It is up to God, and God alone, to determine who is born and who dies and when they are born and when they die. God is the author of life.”
On the return home from the March for Life, one of the four high school buses was involved in a serious accident. A car traveling south on the AA Highway near the California Crossroads intersection in Campbell County in the northbound lane collided with the bus carrying Covington Catholic High School students and chaperones. The driver of the car was pronounced dead at the scene. Two chaperones and one student were transported from the scene to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. They were treated and released the same day. The remaining students were transferred to other buses in the caravan and returned safely to the drop-off point where parents and family members were waiting.
In a released statement Bishop Foys said, “Please join us in praying for everyone involved in this accident.”