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Generation Life St. Louis Pilgrimage

My first time marching

By Abigail Witte | Fontbonne University Student

With this being my first time attending the Pro-Life March, I honestly didn’t know what to expect. I had my preconceived ideas about the event. I was expecting the bus ride to be long and tiresome. I knew lots of people were going to attend and plenty of walking would follow… but that was the extent of my expectations.

Upon arriving in D.C., I quickly found out that a majority of the people who attended the march were young adults. This struck me and made me feel good about myself and my generation. It made me feel good that I was considered one of the hundreds of thousands of people who are sticking up for our unborn, and for our beliefs.

Catching up with Bishop Rice before the march begins

Catching up with Bishop Rice before the march begins

 

Prior to the march, I felt I was in the minority: that being a young pro-lifer in our day and age is practically obsolete. Although I’ve had my share of standing proud in the faith, I have also had trouble trying to stick up for what is right.

Attending the Pro-Life March, has opened my eyes to a different world, a world where all who are in it are there for one reason: Life. I was exposed to children, teens, young adults,  older adults and the elderly who believed that being pro-life should be a given for all.

Life is precious. Life is worth living. I’ve learned that you shouldn’t be afraid of who you are. God made all of us to be great in our own way – don’t let society tell you otherwise, and especially don’t try to hide from your greatness. We need more people to speak up for those who can’t so that they too may have a chance at being someone great, just as God planned them to be.

Death has become a Way of Life

By Katie Gosser | Junior, Bishop DuBourg High School

Having already gone on the March for Life trip two years previously, I thought this year I had it all figured out. Turns out I couldn’t have been more wrong, and am so blessed as a result!

The moment that changed everything for me personally was actually at the end. The Saturday Mass at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception was drawing to a close and Fr. Fallon got up and explained that the total number of abortions since 1973 average out to one every 23.2 seconds. Then, instead of a closing hymn, bells tolled every 23.2 seconds as a reminder of the unborn killed by abortion.

Katie & her twin sister Colleen joined friends, including Bishop Rice, at the March for Life.

Katie & her twin sister Colleen joined friends, including Bishop Rice, at the March for Life.

 

Every ring of the bells had my heart clenching. It was all too final. I was unable to bring those babies back. I silently exited the Shrine and found myself crying. I was a mess and felt foolish. Everyone else seemed to be having a good time on the way home, why couldn’t I get into the spirit of things? What was wrong with me?

That same night, I was at a rest stop and I found a friend. Suddenly I broke down. I couldn’t handle it anymore and exclaimed that “it could’ve been me. All anyone would’ve known was the ring of the bell”. My mom was pressured by her doctor to abort me instead of going through with a high risk pregnancy. Suddenly I felt the pain of knowing someone had not felt my life was worth it. It is a bitter feeling and hard to accept.

Much later that night, awake on the bus, I realized I was begging God to spare the life of the unborn child whom I had spiritually adopted. Pleading that the baby survive this horrible massacre.  I came to realize that those bells could’ve symbolized anyone. We are all survivors of Roe v. Wade!

It breaks my heart to know that so many do not respect human life and do not see life as the, first and foremost basic right of all people. The right to live trumps all other rights, as it is the most fundamental. Thinking back I am thankful. I am thankful towards my parents firstly, because it is they who defended my life when I couldn’t. Secondly, I am thankful that though I may never interact with the babies killed too soon from abortion, they are present during the Consecration of the Holy Eucharist at Mass: 53 million strong, and I pray one day I may meet them in Heaven.

I carry the fact that one-third of my generation is gone due to the ugly industry of abortion, and I use it as my reminder to pray for all mothers and their children. I will continue to pray for the motivation to end the murder that is abortion.

Human Dignity: the death penalty

Troy Woytek | Director of Ministry
Catholic Student Center at Washington University

How do you see dignity in another human being?

That was the fundamental question in every student’s mind when they came to “Death Row on Trial” a panel discussion about the death penalty hosted by the Catholic Student Center in November at Washington University. It can be hard to see the dignity in a person who has committed murder, when that person has taken the dignity away from another person. As people who respect the dignity of life at all stages, from womb to tomb, it seems the task of the pro-life movement is to help people see the dignity of every single human being – that’s why half a million people marched in D.C. last week. Yet you don’t hear college students or young adults (pro-life or not) talking about the death penalty much.

A student told me that going into t1000 2he event she was against the death penalty, but it’s a lot harder to be passionate about restoring the dignity of someone when they are just a name in the paper. Seeing the face and humanity behind the names that day made her more passionate.

The students and I witnessed two powerful things in November: first a documentary called “Potosi: God in Death Row” that showed how some of the men on death row in Missouri had really turned their lives around for good. We also heard from two panelists who described how they have forgiven the man who took the life of their 17-year-old daughter.

So how do you see dignity in a human being?

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