Life Is Winning: Chaminade’s Pro-Life Trip

Life Is Winning: Chaminade's Pro-Life Trip

7:26 A.M.

I woke up and showered and got ready for mass. I was pretty tired and wanted to sleep for at least another hour. My thoughts at this moment are pretty negative. I did not want to go to mass with 2,100 people who were a part of the Generation Life group who came from Saint Louis. I also have pretty low expectations for the March at this point too because of how tired I am and how crowded it will be.

8:30 A.M.

Mass started and the ballroom we were having mass in felt like 100 degrees. Being tired and hot, I was definitely not excited for the mass and was feeling kind of down about the March as well. Archbishop Carlson presided over the mass and he did a tremendous job. His homily was great. It was less of a homily and more of a rally. There was clapping and screaming during the homily. Archbishop Carlson talked about the 57 million lives lost to abortion since 1973 which meant our group of 2,100 should have 1,200 more teens to represent the lives lost that could have been born in our Saint Louis archdiocese. He said we need to march as the power of ONE. Then he said, “Who’s with me?” The group went crazy with applause and approval.

On top of the great homily, there was outstanding music as well. At the mass, there was an entire band with a piano, drums, and three guitarists. The lead guitarist sang and she was exceptional. My thoughts at the end of mass were much different than at the beginning. I was thinking about what this actually symbolized and meant instead of thinking about myself the whole time.

10:15 A.M.

My parish, which consisted of twenty-two people on the trip, ended up not going to the rally because of the amount of security and we weren’t allowed to bring book bags which would have been difficult since we were going to be gone for ten hours. I was pretty happy about this decision and in my opinion, it was a good one. The only bad thing about not going to the rally was that I didn’t get to hear Mike Pence speak, who was the highest elected official to ever speak at the March for Life. The theme for his speech can be summed in three words, “life is winning”.

We started to walk to the metro because we were trying to get downtown before it got to crowded though. We ended up stopping for lunch on Pennsylvania Avenue, down the street from the White House. There were food trucks, Subway, a little coffee shop, and a Froyo. My mom wasn’t happy about my choice of Subway where six other people from our parish joined us. After we finished eating, we walked downtown towards the March. On our way to the March we saw the Whitehouse. We got to the March at around 12:30 and most of our group had to use the restroom so we went inside the National Museum of Natural History. There was a line to get in but it wasn’t too bad. We didn’t look at any of the exhibits because we really just wanted to be a part of the atmosphere outside.

1:00 P.M.

We all thought the March started at one because there were thousands of people walking in the streets starting at one o’clock. We eventually found out it actually didn’t start until about two so we just stood on the sidewalk and watched the March going on like a parade for about an hour. Then we jumped into the March and started to walk at pretty slow pace. I was shocked at how many people kept coming and coming. They were so compact and they were never really separated by groups either. It really reminded me of Archbishop Carlson’s quote, “the power of ONE”. The power of one is symbolic of how one person can show mercy, can share their belief that all life has rights, and can stand for each and every person and unborn child who doesn’t have their own voice.

This is the actual start to the March for Life.

There were so many different signs people were holding. Most of them were the same, but there were a lot of one-of-a-kind signs as well. There were thousands of signs that said, “For those who can’t” and “choose life.” One of my favorite signs read, “No law can give me the right to do what is wrong.” This means that even if abortion is legal, it does not make it right. There were many political signs also. Some were small and uncomplicated and others had complicated edits and were much larger.

A lot of the signs simply read, “Trump Pence.” One of the more complex signs shows Donald Trump and Mike Pence’s faces on one half of a sign with a depiction of a baby saying, “Thank you for defending me!” On the other half is a picture of Barack Obama and underneath him it says, “My legacy? Abortion!”

To be honest, I came on this March to get out of school and to take a trip to Washington D.C. Once we got to the top of the hill near the Capital building, which is when the March basically ends, I realized how much this March means to a lot of people. Then I realized how much this March should mean to me. Innocent, unborn babies lose their lives due to abortion every day and it needs to stop. People need to realize that the baby in the womb is a life. As Mike Pence said in his speech at the Rally, “More than 240 years ago, our founders wrote words that have echoed through the ages. They declared these truths to self-evident, that we are all endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights and among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

After the March, we went to the Air and Space Museum and stayed there for about an hour and a half. The air and space museum did not appeal to me and I was very tired, therefore I did not have that great of a time there. After the museum, we went back to our hotel and ate Domino’s Pizza. We went back to our rooms at around six o’clock to relax for an hour before the talk later that night.

This is the amazing view I had of the march from the top of the hill.

7:00 P.M.

The 2,100 people from Saint Louis that went on the Prolife March gathered in the ballroom of the Marriott Hotel. We listened to a motivational speaker, John Foppe, who has spoken in 25 countries. He was born without arms and had to learn how to deal with what he had. He was always involved in in his youth religious group and was always close to God. Mother Theresa is one of his idols and one of the reasons he is successful today. He has a Master’s Degree and is the Executive Director of the St. Vincent de Paul Society. He said his favorite part about his job is when he gets to work with the people. John said that he loves to help people in a way that directly affects them. We all need to strive to be like John in our everyday lives and fulfill the work that God has sent forth for us to do.

The day of the 44th March for Life ended with Father Fallon asking us to reflect on the day and to write a testimony to ourselves of what we will do to promote the Gospel of Life. My testimony is to start working with people directly on a consistent basis showing mercy and respect the way that John Foppe has. I am fortunate to be at Chaminade where I am provided with so many opportunities to do this to fulfill my testimony.