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Washington D.C., Jan 24, 2020 / 06:40 am (CNA).- An estimated 18,000 young Catholics from around the country filled the Capital One Arena in downtown Washington, DC, Friday morning for the annual Youth Rally and Mass for Life.
Organized by the Archdiocese of Washington, the early morning rally opens a day of events for the March for Life each year. Doors opened just after 6am, but busloads of pilgrims and marchers had already arrived in the early hours of Jan. 24.
Attendees - Evening - Mass - Vigil - Life
Many of the attendees had been up late at the previous evening’s Mass and Vigil for Life at the Basilica of National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception at the campus of The Catholic University of America.
A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Washington told media that the annual rally and Mass was the largest event hosted by the archdiocese every year.
Protest - Witness - Gift - Life - Anniversary
“This is about our protest, our positive witness to the gift of life, on this anniversary of Roe v. Wade. This is what we do. We gather so that we can pray and we take action.”
Speaking to reporters during the rally, Washington Archbishop Wilton Gregory talked about the significance of the event, his first since succeeding Cardinal Donald Wuerl last year.
CNA - Gregory - Use - Abortion - Wedge
CNA asked Gregory about the use of abortion as a political wedge issue by, and how the Church could help build unified culture of life, Gregory said the event showed the breadth and youth of the pro-life movement.
“First of all, [abortion] can be used in a very isolating way,” Gregory acknowledged.
Part - Rally - Part - Catholic - Witness
“But part of the rally, part of our Catholic witness, is that while life within the womb is certainly threatened, on so many levels, it is the first step of the significance of life in all of its manifestations. So what we try to do, especially with our young people, is to...
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