Prayer and sacrifice necessary on March For Life

Bishop Johnston joins members of the Kansas City delegation to the March for Life in Washington, D.C. (Photo courtesy Bishop James Johnston)

By Megan Marley

Following Christ entails offering up prayer and sacrifice, and that includes when you’re on the March for Life, pilgrims were told during a pre-dawn Mass held January 17 at St. John LaLande parish before they left for Washington, D.C.

“We have plenty of opportunities—you don’t have to fast on this trip because there are lots of fast food meals to serve you, but we’ll probably have some mortifications to go through like sleep, lack of comfort, not being able to go to the bathroom when you want…,” listed Fr. Steve Hansen for his fellow marchers.

Father drew multiple parallels in the life of the day’s saint, Anthony of the Desert, to the challenges they would face on the way to D.C. He said St. Anthony lived the gospel passage ’if you will be perfect, go and sell what you have, give to the poor, and come, follow me.’

“We are about to do this—if it’s your first time, or fifth time—and we have a chance to grow in perfection and give of ourselves,” Fr. Hansen said.

He encouraged marchers to pray to discover what God wants of them to do and for the end to abortion, to fast as best they could, which “waters the seed of prayer”, and to act with mercy when speaking with those who support abortion.

“We’re not going to judge people, we’re not here to be hard of heart against those who are for abortion. We’re here to make them feel compassion, to feel love, and to know that the mercy of God is with them, as it is for everyone here,” Fr. Hansen said.

The diocesan group of over 175 people was organized and assembled by the Human Rights and Respect Life Offices and their director, Bill Francis. They were among hundreds of thousands attending the 45th annual March for Life at the nation’s capital January 19. This year, the pre-March rally at the National Mall featured an address by the President of the United States Donald Trump, the first time a sitting president has addressed March for Life attendees.

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Tuesday
August 14, 2018
Newspaper of the Diocese of Kansas City ~ St. Joseph