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This is probably one of the most depressing parts of my job: writing the recap for yet another March for Life which starts another year of decriminalized child killing in America. While I know that we had some amazing ministry, fellowship and outreach in Washington D.C. last week, I am saddened that another year of the American Holocaust has begun.
Our week started out with the drive to Washington D.C. on Monday, January 19th, the day before the Inauguration. We gathered with friends from Survivors, Christian Defense Coalition and other to prepare for Inauguration. At least 20 of us squeezed into two small rooms and attempted to sleep on hardwood floors for about 3 hours before our adventure began.
At 3:30 we started to wake up and pile on the layers of clothing as we prepared to make our way towards the Inauguration parade route. I have never seen so many people up and walking at 4:30 in the morning in my life; it was a very strange morning to say the least. As we met with the Secret Service to be escorted to our permitted spot, we were ushered by thousands of people who had been waiting in line for hours. We were not that surprised by the booing we got from the crowd as we were taken right to the front of everyone.
I can honestly say that I have never been as cold in my life as I was that morning. By the time the sun came out I could not really feel the big toe on my left foot. By 7:30 AM we were in our spot for the parade and now it was just a matter of waiting several hours for President Obama to pass by. We spent time in prayer and talked to people around us about why we were there. When President Obama passed us he was seen reading the banner, "53,000,000 lives lost through abortion, President Obama end the violence".
We know that his first week in office was spent doing the opposite of what our banners pleaded but that will not deter our determination to stand for our brothers and sisters who need a voice. President Obama has already opened the floodgates for funding of embryonic stem cell research and funding abortion overseas and he has not even been in office for a month. We must continue to pray for and admonish him to stand for life and live out the faith he claims to believe in.
The Inauguration may have been over, but our week was just beginning. We were up bright and early the next morning to set up the Stand True booth at the March for Life convention. We welcomed in the rest of the Stand True team as we prepared for the March and other events we had planned.
Thursday morning we got up early and headed out to the White House to pray for our new President on the anniversary of Roe vs Wade. We prayed for him to embrace life and the sanctity of all human life from the moment of fertilization to natural death. Later we met up with many of the other organizations from the Youth Life Alliance and marched together as a unified youth pro-life movement. We were excited to see over 300,000 people gather in Washington for the March for Life, the biggest I can remember since 1994 when I started coming.
Friday morning we were up bright and early again as we met at an abortion mill near George Washington University for the start of our prayer walk. We were so blessed to have over 350 people join us for this event. We prayed at the first abortion mill for about 45 minutes before walking to the Planned Parenthood a couple of miles away. After a time of prayer and singing at Planned Parenthood we walked to the White House for a time of prayer and a talk from Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I was honored by the chance to speak and pray next to Dr. King and join her as we laid down 1,400 flowers at the White House, commemorating the number of African-American babies that die each day through legal abortion.
Later that day we finished up our activism with a display of Life Development signs near Union Station in the heart of D.C. We ended the afternoon with prayer and then got some much-needed rest before the Students for Life Conference the next day.
Saturday morning we were up bright and early again to set up our booth at the Students for Life conference. I was speaking at the conference that afternoon and was excited to see the place so full. It turned out to be a great conference and we talked to hundreds of students who were excited to be more active in pro-life and get involved with Stand True.
The staff and I probably got about 10 total hours of sleep the whole week, but it was so worth it. We know that God was glorified, His word was proclaimed in love on throughout the streets and His people came together for the voiceless.
My prayer is that we do not have to return next year for the 37th March for Life (I refuse to say annual, because it must end). While I don't want to come back, I will if necessary and I hope you will join us.
Bryan Kemper firstname.lastname@example.org