The Respect Life Ministry of the Diocese of Bridgeport strives to build a culture of life by upholding and promoting the dignity of human life from the moment of conception to natural death.
We work to implement the guidelines of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Pastoral Plan for Pro-Life Activities, in which we are called upon as church with our resources, our people, our services and institutions to pursue the cause of life with renewed energy and commitment.
WASHINGTON—For 47 years, people of all faiths, denominations, races and backgrounds have gone to Washington to march for life and stand against abortion. Thousands of pro-life supporters have converged on the National Mall and marched on Capitol Hill on the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion.
This year on January 29, because of COVID-19 restrictions, there will be a virtual March. The March for Life leaders are encouraging people to sign up for the Virtual March so they will be able to participate virtually. In order to sign up, click here.
“We marched during the blizzard of 2016, we’ve marched during government shutdowns, we marched after 9/11, we will march again this year,” said Jeanne Mancini, president of March for Life. “We’ve marched for 47 years, and no sacrifice is too great to fight this human rights abuse of abortion.”
This year’s theme is “Together Strong: Life Unites” For more information, click here.
Dr. Lenore Opalak, co-leader of the 40 Days for Life campaign in Bridgeport, said that in order to include the large number of people who would usually attend the March but cannot travel this year due to pandemic restrictions, the March for Life has added a virtual component, featuring live-streaming of the pre-rally concert and entire roster of speakers.
“As long as the ultimate human rights abuse of the killing of pre-born babies, sanctioned by the government, continues, the March for Life will continue, providing essential public witness in support of the sanctity of life,” she said.
Because of the problems posed by the coronavirus pandemic, the March will be scaled down this year with the requisite masking/social distancing in place.
“It is so important that we persevere in prayer and make our voices heard in opposition to abortion to protect the lives of babies and help for the mothers who are faced with the decision,” said Maureen Ciardiello, coordinator of Respect Life & Project Rachel for the Diocese of Bridgeport. Project Rachel is a ministry of the Church that offers a program to help post-abortive women in the healing process. For more information, contact Ciardiello by phone at 203.416.1445 or email at email@example.com.
The March for Life will be held on Friday, January 29 on the National Mall in Washington DC between the Washington Monument and 12th Street. The pre-rally concert will begin at 11 am followed by the rally at noon. The march begins immediately following the rally at approximately 1 p.m. and proceeds east from the Washington Monument, between 12th and 14th Streets on Constitution Avenue and ends in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.
Matthew West, the GMA Dove Award®-winning and GRAMMY Award®-nominated artist/songwriter, will be performing at this year’s rally.
“I am honored to be performing at the March for Life,” West said. “This is an important event, and I look forward to proudly lifting my voice along with thousands of people from all walks of life as we gather together in Washington DC and send this message loud and clear: I believe every life deserves a voice. Every child deserves a chance.”
In addition to West, speakers will include athlete, author and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow; Cissie Graham Lynch, granddaughter of the late Rev. Billy Graham; Elizabeth Eller, student body president at Christendom College, and Archbishop Joseph Naumann, the USCCB Chair of the Pro-Life Committee.
“People from all different walks of life, faiths, colors, and backgrounds are united in the belief that life has inherent human dignity,” said Jeanne Mancini. “This year’s theme highlights diversity as the true strength of the pro-life movement and how our commitment to life has the power to unify. The world today is divided, but the pro-life movement is working for the day that abortion, one of the most fundamentally divisive acts, becomes unthinkable.”
A Prayerful Rosary March will take place on Friday, January 22 from 4:00-5:00 pm at the Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Trumbull. This event, occurring on the 48th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion, is an opportunity for those unable to attend the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C. to come together and pray for the unborn.
WASHINGTON—The on-site evening program for the January 28 National Prayer Vigil for Life will take place at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC, is closed to the public and will be taking place virtually. There will be several broadcast and livestreaming options for the various Vigil prayer events occurring during January 28-29, which are listed in this announcement.
2021 National Prayer Vigil for Life (All times are in Eastern Time.)
Thursday, January 28:
8 pm National Rosary for Life
8:30 pm Opening Mass with Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City in Kansas
9:45 pm Holy Hour for Life
11 pm ~ Live-stream of bishop-led holy hours throughout the night
Friday, January 29:
8 am Closing Mass with Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore
The live television broadcasts on January 28 from 8-11 pm and on January 29 from 8-9 am will be provided by the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) and will also be available via live-stream on the Basilica’s website.
The overnight bishop-led holy hours will take place during January 28-29 from 11 pm–8 am. Live-streaming information is available on the USCCB’s website.
A plenary indulgence is available this year for those participating in the Opening or Closing Mass and/or the Prayer Vigil, whether virtually or in person (the other usual conditions for a plenary indulgence apply).
TRUMBULL—Recognizing the power of praying the rosary and the on-going movement to repeal Roe v. Wade, parishioners from the Diocese of Bridgeport and beyond gathered at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Trumbull last Friday, braving the chill of a January afternoon to honor the unborn. Since the annual March of Life in Washington, D.C. scheduled for January 29 will only occur virtually, Susan Monks, a Catholic Cemetery Family Counselor, coordinated this event so people locally could show their support for the pro-life cause.