The last warm days of summer and early fall seem an odd time to start thinking of the freezing temperatures in Washington DC in January, but for us the autumn begins our busiest time of year, when we organize the March for Life DC and Walk for Life in San Francisco. Signs must be ordered, hotel rooms reserved, and plans made for our part in the two largest life-affirming gatherings in our nation.
Why? Why do we do this? Does the Church really have an effective voice? Does this really make a difference to anyone? These are all questions we have heard before. The effort, the work, the cold—it must seem extreme to the critics and purposeless to the jaded and frustrated.
There are a number of reasons why we march and why it’s important that the Church join us—but I’d like to share with you some of the reasons from our bishops and church leaders who join with us every year:
Bishop John Miller – I march because I believe every human God creates deserves to have life according to His plan; someone must bear witness to that divine truth. I march for the many children who will never use their feet to walk, their lips to speak, their ears to hear, or their hearts to love. I march to acknowledge their tragic loss; I am honored to do so.
Bishop John Guernsey – “I march to honor God the creator of life and in support of those who are at the beginning or the end of life, those who are the weakest and most vulnerable among us”
Bishop Atwood – The tenets of the Anglican Church of North America declares the Sanctity of Life. By marching my fellow bishops and I serve as a visible declaration of the Church’s continuing defense of the defenseless, the unborn.
Bishop Charles Masters – I march because of the plight of the unborn in a culture that increasingly embraces abortion. We, as the church must call attention to their value and seek to protect them.
Bishop William Wilson – It is remarkable to see the attendance at the March—every year there are more people who want the world to know that abortion is not the answer. We march because we believe that God can use this march to inspire the greater Anglican Commune to stand up for Life.
Bishop Thompson – The Canon’s of the Anglican Church state that God, not man, is the creator of human life and that the clergy are called to respect and protect the sanctity of life. We march because the sanctity of life is not just a “hot topic” issue but a truth on which the Anglican Church was founded.
Bishop Murdoch – Over 40 years ago, the Church was silent and Roe vs Wade was decided. Now we march because the Church can no longer be silent in the face of the millions of children who have died.
Archbishop Foley Beach –I march shoulder to shoulder with members of the Anglican College of Bishops, to provide a witness that our church affirms that life is given by God and that we are against the destruction of life through abortion and euthanasia.
We don’t march out of a sense of tradition. We don’t march to congratulate ourselves on our higher sense of morality.
We march because we serve as Christ’s ambassadors in a fallen world, and we need to tell the world that the Church will not stand aside while God’s gift of life is being disregarded and destroyed.
We march because all lives matter, from the unborn in the womb to elderly people who are expecting to see the end of their days.
And we march because we have hope. Hope that, through us, God will bring an end to abortion. Hope that a culture that values death will instead value life. And hope that there will come a day when we no longer march for the unborn but celebrate that their lives are valued and protected.