Jan 29, 2014 / 04:05 am
The Walk for Life West Coast held each year in San Francisco is an important opportunity for those in the western U.S. to demonstrate their solidarity with the unborn, according to the city’s archbishop.
“The main purpose it serves is for those who can’t get back to Washington for the March for Life, that we’re still able to gather all of us together…and by virtue of our numbers, bear witness to the strength of the pro-life movement,” Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone told CNA after celebrating a Mass for the pilgrims who had come the Jan. 26 event.
“I know there are walks in a lot of different cities, but I think it’s important to have one key event on the east coast, and one one the west coast: it’s a long ways to the east coast – sometimes people from back east don’t realize that.”
Many of the some 50,000 participants in Saturday’s walk were university students, coming from Berkeley across the bay, Thomas Aquinas College downstate, and even from Wyoming Catholic College, four states away. Alongside Catholics were Lutherans, Anglicans, Baptists, and agnostics as well.
Archbishop Cordileone noted the importance of the Walk’s pro-life witness “especially here in San Francisco, which is always at the forefront of these social changes which are not always in keeping with the greatest respect for human life.”
The archbishop’s homily at Mass, said on the feast of the Conversion of St. Paul, had focused on the inter-generational witness of the Walk for Life West Coast, noting both the large number of young people and those who have been defending the unborn for many years.
One of the prayers at the solemn blessing at the Mass’ end, that God, “who endowed you with the teaching and example of the Apostles, make you…witnesses to the truth before all.”
This role of being “witnesses to the truth” is what makes the coincidence “very providential,” Archbishop Cordileone said. “I mentioned in the homily those who have come to the pro-life movement by means of conversion…it does take courage to proclaim the truth, it has in every age.”
“In every generation there has been some reason why it has taken courage to proclaim the truth,” he continued, “and certainly that is the case in our own age; the consequences aren’t as dire as in past ages, but still it will take courage, and in my homily I was trying to bolster that courage among our young people who really have to be strong in standing up for the truth now.” …
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