May 4, 2014 / 11:12 am
Leaders in the movement to protect human life from conception to natural death held a conference in Rome on Saturday to discuss various pro-life initiatives underway throughout the world.
“The idea was to bring together international leaders from the pro-life movement from all over the world, here to Rome to support the Italians, but also to be here with the Church,” said Joseph Meaney, the Director of Coordination for Human Life International, one of the organizations sponsoring the event.
The May 3 conference known as the Rome Life Forum, hosted just down the street from the Vatican, was held in anticipation of Italy’s fourth annual March for Life on May 4.
“This meeting is very exciting. It’s actually the first international life forum here in Rome, held in connection with the Roman March for life,” Meaney told CNA on May 3.
Leaders from 36 different pro-life groups from Europe, North America, and as far away as New Zealand met behind closed doors on Saturday morning to discuss and strategize.
The afternoon public portion of the conference included speakers Cardinal Raymond Burke and Catholic commentator George Weigel.
Conference participant Julia Calinescu, who moved to Romania with her husband Dan six years ago to begin the pro-life group LifeNation, said that she felt it was “very significant for leaders to be able to get together.”
“You still need a mentor, you’re never a ‘master of the trade,’ so it was really great for us to be inspired by people who have so much more experience than we do,” she noted.
Dan Calinescu said he felt encouraged by meeting so many other pro-life leaders from around the world.
“I think sometimes especially in Romania, because the pro-life movement is so young, sometimes you feel alone and like you’re fighting on your own, but just being here … we get strength from this,” he said. …