Thursday, September 22, 2011

Report on two European Marches for Life "Berlin" and "Zurich"

Two "Marches for Life" took place in Europe last Saturday September 17th. One in Berlin and one in Zurich
The Berlin March for Life which lasted 2.5 hours commenced with a demonstration outside the Office of the Federal Chancellor and made its way Cathédrale Ste Hedwige (culte oecuménique)

Many people from all over Germany and other European countries gathered for the annual march for life to remember the aborted children and the innumerable women, men, and families who suffer from an abortion.
The Berlin march for life organisers called on German society and politicians to take action to really prevent and avoid abortion and to improve assistance for unplanned pregnant parents in need. They also expressed deep concerned about the silent increase of acceptance of euthanasia in Europe, as it is already being practiced again in some countries.
The march for life was organized by Bundesverband Lebensrecht, currently an alliance of  14 organizations and initiatives which focuses on different pro-life areas. The march was supported by several members of the German parliament and many people from different organizations and churches.

The Zurich event Marche pour la Vie  (Marsch für s’Läbe) met at Helvetiaplatz. 
The following are extracts from a report on the event by Mary Langlois who attended the event

“[…] This is truly an international battle, and prolifers all speak the same language. We listened to a professional social worker with achondroplasia, and a mother with adopted Down’s syndrome children, both telling us that life matters. It was evident that they were happy, fulfilled women, not tragic figures. The Down’s children played and smiled while their mother spoke, the social worker radiated confidence and joy. Beautiful posters of preborn children reminded us of the innocent victims of the unspeakable injustice of abortion. […]”

Mary also writes that the march attracted a group of angry pro-abortion protestors.

“Although the anti-life protesters were out-numbered by prolifers at least ten-to-one, police had to take measures to maintain order, a few times resorting to water hoses and tear gas, because protesters were entering the plaza where participants gathered, and behaving in a threatening way. Some carried crosses emblazoned with disrespectful slogans and items. I won’t dignify them by going into detail. Prolifers seemed unconcerned, and were certainly undeterred.”

The march according to Mary 

"wound through the streets of downtown Zurich for about two hours, with trams, buses, and cars detoured or stopped to make way. Shoppers, bystanders, and people  in cafes looked on, many showing subtle signs of support by waving a little or smiling, some frowning, some merely curious. We were flanked by vigilant police officers, young men from the prolife side helping with security, and a wonderful Brazilian-style music group bringing up the rear who provided an energizing drum beat that inspired us as we went along the route.

The March was inspiring and exciting. There is a real energy in Europe for life and family. Pope Benedict is defending European Catholic heritage, and people of all creeds are fighting back against the culture of death. We are not separated by language or culture. We are united in this cause.”

Both events were arranged to raise public awareness of the injustice of abortion and to offer information and help to people who have suffered from the consequences of abortion. The Zurich march was also held with the intention of proposing a new ban on abortion