Rain Disrupts Pro-Life Youth Rally but Not March for Life
WASHINGTON – Although winter weather forced the National Pro-life Youth Rally from its Washington, D.C., location, marchers in the 39th annual March for Life were undeterred.
The youth rally changed from a live concert near the Supreme Court to a live audio webcast after the Washington, D.C. area experienced snow and freezing rain over the weekend.
Students for Life of America, a sponsoring organization for the event, warned attendees of the change, announcing, "For those who are planning to attend the March for Life today, please know that there has been a travel advisory due to overnight ice. In addition, the weather forecast is calling for 90% chance of rain," SFLA Executive Director Kristan Hawkins said.
She continued, "Weather conditions are forcing us to modify the National Pro-Life Youth Rally. Instead of having a stage with a band and speakers, we will be there holding a LIVE audio webcast."
The rally was the second in the history of the March for Life. Last year's acts included Christian female rock band BarlowGirl.
During the audio webcast Monday, former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson, pro-life advocate Lila Rose and David Bereit of 40 Days for Life spoke on a conference call chat line. Listeners could also listen in from Skype.
It is unclear whether or not Christian country music singer Collin Raye and worship leader Robert Pierre conducted musical performances on the chat line.
Although the youth rally was forced to change its plans, March for Life participants continued on in the rain to mark the 39th anniversary of U.S. Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade.
Mary Ernstamann told The Christian Post she traveled from Kansas City, Mo., to attend what is now her seventh March for Life rally. She said of the attendance, "It was just as hardy" as previous years.
Madonna of Washington, Mo., declined to give her last name but said of the attendance, "I was really impressed and overwhelmed since this was my first time."
Both Madonna and Ernstamann traveled to rally with their parishes. Several others came with family members and their schools and college campus groups.
Hawkins said pro-life students were out in "full force." SFLA greeted them with signs that proclaimed "I am the pro-life generation" and forms registering those 18 years and older to vote "pro-life."
Attendees were also greeted with remarks from House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) as well as prayers given by Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic clergy.