Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Walking the Walk...

I was asked to write a summary of the Pro-Life walk for "Choose Life News" and for the local North Battleford newspaper, so I thought I'd post the article here, as it gives an overview of what we did last Saturday morning.


If you were on 100th Street at about 10 o'clock on Saturday morning, September 25, you would have seen the "Battlefords Right-To-Life" walk in progress.

A police escort began the procession that included a large banner and many people, of all ages, carrying signs and colourful balloons. Approximately 130 people laced up their running shoes and came out to the annual event.

Participants turned onto Railway Avenue at the end of 100th and walked out to the Frontier Mall and then along the service road, eventually arriving at City Cemetery.

At the graveyard the group were met by members of the Fourth Degree of the Knights of Columbus honour guard.

All gathered near the Monument to the Unborn that was erected by the organization, and dedicated and blessed in the Fall of 1991, and a short prayer service was held. Micheal Hudec was the emcee for this portion of the event. The first speaker to the microphone was Father Ron Dechant.

Dechant emphasized how a mother's heart is "hardwired" to that of her children - not unlike the firewall of a computer. He noted how mothers do not forget their children, even if they have given them up for adoption.

Dechant also powerfully stated that the pro-life cause was "not a Catholic issue." He then went on to state that it was also not a "Christian issue" but rather a "societal issue." And that the walkers were not protesting but rather showing how things should be.

Stella Legario, a former nurse at the Battlefords Union Hospital, recounted one personal experience she had on a ward when she was brought "face to face" with the issue on the job site. Legario was asked to assist a doctor, who has now passed away, with an abortion he was performing. Stella was very upset by this, as it went against her conscience and she told the doctor she would be unable to help him, and that she would be leaving the hospital and returning home. Later, she was called back to complete her shift on another ward, as the adminstration was unable to find anyone to replace her on the roster at such short notice. In the days that followed, Legario was assured by a supervisor in charge that she "had done the right thing" standing up for what she believed in.

Father Gerard Legaspi also spoke. He also shared from personal experience about a woman who came to him, pregnant with her third child. The Filipino woman and her husband lived in abject poverty and were unable to adequately supply the needs of another baby. And so Legaspi, who was in the early stages of his religious training, offered to take the child into his own immediate family. This "baby" is now 17 years old and was raised by a sibling and is considered to be Legaspi's parent's "first grandchild."

Jim McLane then led a series of prayer intentions. The service concluded with the scripture song, "Isaiah 49," which was led by Kaylene McQuaid. Patrick Hudec and Stephen McLane accompanied the singing on their guitars.

From the cemetery, the walkers were bussed back the 3.5 miles to St. Joseph's Catholic Church, where a delicious lunch was served and participants visited briefly, before going on about the remainder of their day, knowing they, too, had demonstrated what they believe.

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