Nicole B. Baker, Staff Writer

Have you ever participated in a March for Life to stand up for the rights of the unborn?  I have lost count of the number of marches to Washington, DC I have joined, traveling with local churches, and Catholic colleges:  Seton HIll, Villanova, and Immaculata. However, this year was the first time I joined the March in Harrisburg. The day sparkled as we left the Saints Philip and James Church parking lot, the bus nearly full. The bus driver introduced himself and noted he had transported Phillies ball players. Then we departed for the PA. – Turnpike west.  

The need for a march in Harrisburg is a direct result of the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court. We arrived at our first stop on Monday, October 16, at St. Patrick’s Cathedral for the 9:30 Mass – celebrated by a former Philadelphia bishop, Bishop Senior, who now serves in the Harrisburg Diocese.  He referred to Pope Francis’ phrase “a revolution of tenderness” as one way to overcome the culture of death so prevalent in our nation now. Bishop Senior urged his listeners to have concern for all human life. He reminded us that “the future is in the hands of those who recognize the other.”  St. Patrick’s Cathedral was packed, and the organist pulled out all of the stops to fill the space with majestic music; a great start.  

 Out on the street we directed our steps to the perimeter of the Capitol building where groups of supporters gathered with their signs and banners.  A stage was set up outside to allow guest speakers to address the crowd. The speeches went on for a long while as various aspects were addressed, such as: maintaining funding for crisis pregnancy centers. Governor Shapiro has said he will take these funds away in January 2024, and this announcement resulted in  loud reactions from the thousands assembled. Clearly, this group favored the continuation of government support for mothers who need it. 

 Finally, the march began with the sounds of the Saint Louis de Montfort Academy band’s drum beat. We circled the Capitol building, holding our signs high in the air for all to see.  Enthusiasm was at a high, and prayers were recited fervently for a change in favor of life for the unborn in Pennsylvania. People from across the Commonwealth represented numerous counties in favor of life from conception to natural death. 

 I noticed the pink rose bushes planted around the Pennsylvania capitol.  As you may know, the rose is often used as a pro- life symbol and it represents the rosary, the spiritual weapon we have to win our battles here on earth. Our Lady of Fatima requested that everyone pray a rosary each day for peace in the world. The patriotic rosary involves saying one Hail Mary for every state in the nation. It is a way we can all get involved and do our little part to bring about peace and build a culture of life in each state in the USA. 

What an invigorating October Monday!  I encourage you to join in a March for Life whether in Harrisburg, Washington, or your local county. It’s an experience you won’t soon forget.