SAN FRANCISCO, California - In a beautiful, sunny Saturday afternoon, an estimated crowd of 50,000 people marched in front of the San Francisco's City Hall, marking the ninth year that Walk for Life West Coast has been held. Protesters held signs that supported their undaunted message of pro-life.
This year is the 40th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion. Community leaders and pro-life activists proclaimed their belief in the sanctity of life and vouched for the rights of every unborn child through their messages and testimonies, reaching the hearts of thousands of people both old and young.
“You are a powerful witness that God’s truth cannot be silenced,” said San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, who blessed participants to begin the event. “Yes, we are here to stay because life is good and life is holy.”
Dr. Evelyn Li, representative of Asian American for Life told The Gospel Herald about the abortion's hazardous effects towards women based on medical statistics.
"Women who had abortion and suffer from depression has two to four times the mortality rate than those who did not in the following ten years. Because abortion is an ultra-unnatural procedure, women who had abortion would have a higher chance of contracting illnesses and other side-effects. If pregnant again, the chances of miscarriage would be increased," said Li.
"We are not taking away women's right to choose, but they should have a clear understanding of the consequences of abortion before making the decision," she added.
Pope Benedict XVI’s representative to the United States, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano delivered a message from the pope along with his papal blessing.
Pope Benedict’s message, which was also sent out on a Vatican Twitter feed, said, His Holiness “is grateful to all those who take part in this outstanding public witness to the fundamental human right to life and the moral imperative of upholding the inviolable dignity of each member of our human family, especially the smallest and most defenseless of our brothers and sisters.”
Featured speakers included Archbishop Cordileone, Archbishop Vigano, the Rev. Clenard Childress, director of L.E.A.R.N., the largest African-American pro-life group in the U.S., actress Jennifer O'Neill and members of the Silent No More Awareness Campaign.