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March for Life set for Washington return

March for Life participants make their to the US Supreme Court in 2012 (CNS)

The March for Life, described by one regular participant as “the biggest human rights rally in the world”, returns to Washington DC on Thursday.

The 42nd rally on the National Mall and march to the US Supreme Court marks the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling in the case of Roe vs Wade that invalidated state and federal restrictions on abortions, legalising abortion virtually on demand.

Micaiah Bilger, education director of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, said she sees the march as an opportunity to move forward from Roe vs Wade.

“The March for Life is, I think, the biggest human rights rally in the world and it’s wonderful to go and be with other people and unite under that cause,” Bilger said. “It’s important for us to stand up in our nation’s capital and say, ‘Abortion is a human rights injustice and we want to see all life protected.'”

Though the March for Life focuses on abortion, Bilger added that the rally is in support of all human lives, regardless of age.

“Part of our mission is also legislative work, so we work in legislation here in Pennsylvania to make sure that there are resources available for pregnant and parenting moms so they don’t feel like they’re being pressured to have an abortion or feel like abortion is their only option,” Bilger said.

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles Archbishop Jose H Gomez led about 15,000 people from throughout Southern California in celebrating “the beauty of every human life” from conception to natural death at the OneLife LA event on January 17.

Organisers said it was the first such large-scale pro-life rally to be held in downtown Los Angeles and they plan to make it an annual gathering.

“In the Christian vision, every human life is precious — created by God with transcendent dignity and endowed with rights that no one can deny or take away,” said Archbishop Gomez. “OneLife LA celebrates this vision and calls us to action — to love life, to care for life and to protect life at every stage and every condition, beginning with the most vulnerable in the womb.”

On the same day in Denver, about 1,500 people gathered for the March for Life Colorado, which went around the perimeter of downtown Denver’s Civic Center Park to the Colorado Capitol. Beforehand, Archbishop Samuel J Aquila of Denver celebrated Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.

“Thank you for standing up for life and the dignity of the humanity,” Archbishop Aquila said in his remarks at the march. He urged pro-life supporters to be bold in pro-life stand and not be afraid to take that message door to door, because “fear is always the work of the emissaries of death … of the evil one.”