Today is the 49th annual March For Life in Washington, D.C., held a day before the anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade that allowed a legal right to abortion.
This year's theme, Equality Begins in the Womb, according to the March for Life website, highlights how true equality is only possible if we recognize that children in the womb also deserve protection.
Among the speakers scheduled for today is Fr. Mike Schmitz, a popular speaker and Catholic priest featured in Ascension's Bible in a Year Bible in a Year podcast, among other Ascension-produced content. To watch coverage of the March - the rally begins at noon today and the March runs from 1 to 4 p.m. - tune into EWTN's live coverage here.
In the lead up to the March For Life this week, supporters of a radical pro-abortion bill in Congress called for lawmakers to pass the bill "immediately."
The deceptively named Women's Health Protection Act would impose abortion on demand nationwide at any stage of pregnancy, eliminate widely supported pro-life laws at the federal, state, and local levels, and force all Americans to support abortions here and abroad with their tax dollars.
Tomorrow (Jan. 22) is the day prescribed by the Church to pray for the legal protection of the unborn. It coincides with the day, 49 years ago, that the U.S. Supreme Court issued the Roe ruling.
Ahead of the anniversary of the Roe decision, Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Committee on Pro-Life Activities, called on Catholics to pray and fast for the legal protection of the unborn both on Saturday and beyond. Archbishop Lori said the following:
"The Catholic Church's opposition to abortion is a response of love for both mothers and their children in the womb. The Church's teaching proclaims a message of life, reminding us that every life is a sacred gift from God from the moment of conception until natural death.
"In remembrance of the tragic anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and in petition for full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life for all individuals, the Catholic Church in the United States recognizes the National Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children. We invite all Catholics and people of good will to fast and pray on this day, and frequently between now and June, when we anticipate a decision by the Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health. We pray that this important case might reverse Roe and its unjust abortion license.
"We cannot build a truly just society and remain complacent when faced with the massive impact of Roe v. Wade, which has taken over 60 million lives since 1973. May we pray, fast, and work for the day when the gift of every human life is protected in law and welcomed in love."
You may choose to join in the day of prayer with the following prayer:
Heavenly Father, thank you for the precious gift of life. Help us to cherish and protect this gift, even in the midst of fear, pain, and suffering. Give us love for all people, especially the most vulnerable, and help us bear witness to the truth that every life is worth living.
Grant us the humility to accept help when we are in need, and teach us to be merciful to all. Through our words and actions, may others encounter the outstretched hands of Your mercy. We ask this through Christ, our Lord. Amen.