La. pro-lifers take to the streets of DC

Published 12:00 am Friday, February 8, 2008


Staff Reporter

LAPLACE – Pro-life supporters from LaPlace, Reserve, Gramercy and Convent joined residents from New Orleans and Baton Rouge as they made a three-day bus ride to Washington, DC to participate in a march against abortion.

In all, 21 residents from the River Parishes joined the three-bus caravan of mostly teenagers to the nation’s capital to be a part of events surrounding the 34th annual March for Life, held Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2008.

Earline Lemoine, a resident of LaPlace and one of the members of the group, said the trip began January 18 with a mass at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Picayune, Miss. After one more stop in Hattiesburg to pick up more participants the caravan began its journey north and east toward Washington.

“We made a stop in Gettysburg and had a chance to see the site where that important Civil War battle was held,” said Lemoine. “It was a poignant moment to be in a place where the fight for the civil rights of all people was taken up.”

After a Sunday morning mass, the caravan continued through Pennsylvania into Maryland, reaching its final destination that evening.

Lemoine said the group had the opportunity to enjoy a few days of sightseeing before the march, and the participants took advantage of their time.

“We had the chance to visit the World War I and World War II memorials, along with the Korean and Vietnam War memorials,” said Lemoine. “I think our most impressive stop was at the Holocaust memorial where our ‘pilgrims’ truly had the opportunity to understand Hitler’s ideas about life and death.”

The day of the march began with a National Memorial for the pre-born and their Mothers and Fathers, which was a prayer liturgy led by Dr. Paul Schenk. Lemoine said participants enjoyed music by Tony Melendez, a famous musician born without arms, and were also treated to readings and prayers from ministers of different faiths.

After the liturgy, Lemoine said the local participants paid a visit to the offices of Sen. Mary Landrieu and Sen. David Vitter. Lemoine said the congressmen were not available, but the group left notes asking the senators to always vote pro-life.

Finally, the group moved on to the march toward the Supreme Court building. The local participants joined roughly 300,000 people holding signs and belting out chants against abortion and the famed Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade.

“It was truly an exciting experience,” said Lemoine. “We spent the whole ride home discussing how much we were all moved by the event, and how many small miracles we witnessed.”