dcn_dave2“Hey, hey! Ho, ho! Roe v. Wade has got to go!”
“Hey, hey! Ho, ho! Roe v. Wade has got to go!”

The youthful, energetic chant rhythmically resounded up Constitution Avenue as we marched and the snow began to fall on Washington D.C. The voice was that of a new generation, determined to see the right to life restored for the unborn. The ill-advised Roe versus Wade decision of the United States Supreme Court on January 22, 1973, of course, discarded that right. Despite the dire weather forecast of two to three feet of snow, the March for Life, which began at the Washington Monument, pressed on to the Supreme Court building, drawing additional strength from the opposition of the elements.

The 2016 March for Life was smaller in numbers as expected, because of the weather forecast; but it was perhaps even stronger in spirit. This year sixteen Lumen Christi students, led by Jackson Right to Life Director Mrs. Kathy Potts, along with LC faculty and chaperones joined the March.

After safely arriving and checking into the Washington Court Hotel Thursday morning, the group walked over for a tour of the Capitol Building. Following lunch, preparations were made and all headed to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception for the Opening Mass for the National Prayer Vigil for Life. In order to be reasonably assured of a seat, many arrived FIVE hours before the 6pm Mass! The principle celebrant was His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan, whose homily Agents of Conversion stirred the gathering, delineating what we need to do as a pro-life people.

We are summoned to be such agents of conversion. Yes, we do it by reasoned and compelling argument; sure, we do it by advocacy; you bet, we do it in law and political action; don’t forget, so obvious tonight, we do it by prayers and fasting . . . but we most successfully accomplish this conversion from the culture of death to the culture of life, from the “throw away culture” to the culture of tenderness and mercy, by imitating those of Holy Child Jesus Parish in New York City [This past Advent they rescued an abandoned newborn baby found outside in the cold in their parish manger].

Following the Mass, the next four “snowed in days” were filled with providential blessings and joy: Daily rosaries, Divine Mercy Chaplets, Mass, shared meals, music, laughter, and, of course, the March. All of us, the hotel staff and even the band, were there for a time that was unexpected, unplanned, yet filled with surprises and blessings.

Fr. Roger Arnsparger, a gifted priest from Charlotte, NC, also snowed in, celebrated our final Mass together on Sunday. In his homily he said, “Every step [as in the March] you take is proclamation of the Gospel of Life!”

Dcn. Dave