I would like to give some details of what occurred last Friday in our nation's capital at the largest human rights gathering in the world -- March for Life 2013 -- of which I was a part.
Jan. 22 marked the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade; however, because of the inauguration on Jan. 21, the March for Life was held on Jan. 25 this year. There were 650,000 participants marching in Washington, D.C. People came from all over the U.S., Canada, and even a group from Ireland.
Many attendees arrived the day before, most of whom are high school and college students. At the rally, which precedes the march, we stood beside an impassioned group of 400 students from Kansas. There were 650 students from Notre Dame who led the march this year. Many other colleges across the United States were represented, including Harvard, Yale and Liberty universities. Many traveled for a day or more by buses.
It was an amazing event to attend. The number of young people there was outstanding, perhaps 80 percent. They know that one-third of their generation is missing; more than 55 million babies have been aborted in the last 40 years, which is an average of 3,300 lives per day (or a 9 -11 daily).
The speaker who left significant impact on me was Ryan Bomberger who heads Radiance Foundation. He is a young man who shared the powerful story of his mom having been raped and then courageously and lovingly choosing life for him. Despite her pain, she made the tough choice of giving him birth and allowing him to be adopted so he could grow up to love and be loved. Ryan is a positive voice for so many, showing that each life has value.
We long for respect for all human life from conception to natural death. We pray that our hearts will show and grow love and respect, receiving and giving forgiveness.