This year marked the 44th anniversary of the Supreme Court case Roe vs. Wade, which legalized abortion in the United States. Every year since then people have gone to Washington, D.C. to protest in defense of human life. This year, in comparison with last year, due to weather inconveniences, the march was significantly much more well attended as tens of thousands of people came to Washington Mall to March pro-life. The Institute of the Incarnate Word (IVE) as every year seeks to make a good turnout. This year about 270 IVE youth attended March for Life and/or the 3rd Annual Winter Youth Festival. The Institute had youth from all over the USA; coming from Alabama, New York, Florida, Wisconsin, Pennsylvanian and Connecticut, some even came from Canada.
This weekend’s of pro-life event started on Thursdays evening with a vigil mass at the National Shine of the Immaculate Conception; Mass was presided by His Eminence, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, the Chairman of the U.S. bishop’s Committee on Pro-Life Activities. We are safe and secure in our mother’s womb, the sanctuary God has created for us, said Cardinal Dolan, but if the womb is violated, than other sanctuaries are at risk. His Eminence then added, giving support to the youth, “You are making a difference in the United States… changing our culture from a culture of death into a culture of life.” After Holy Mass, the IVE priest and seminarians returned to the Ven. Fulton Sheen House of Formation to welcome the arrival of the youth for Friday’s March.
The following morning, IVE priest and seminarians, sister (from the Servant of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara) and youth prayed Morning Prayer, ate breakfast and attended Holy Mass. After Mass, the youth came down to the parish hall to grab their lunch bags and practiced some last minute chants until it was time to load the buses. Everyone gathered at the Washington Mall started to chanted with great vitality! The IVE were chanting jumping for nearly two hours with stop before they started the walk the March on Independence Avenue. The youth, impressive as every year, gave all their energy. Before arriving to the Supreme Court for the final group picture the IVE prayed the Rosary entreating the intercession of our Blessed Mother. The Youth then returned to the Parish of St. John Baptist de LaSalle for snack and free time. Later that evening the youth had Adoration with confession, dinner and a “Fogon” (song and entertainment).
On Saturday, January 28th, youth from local parishes, such as St. John Baptist de LaSalle, St. James, St. Mark, St. Matthew Cathedral and etc., came to together at St. John Baptist de LaSalle with the youth from other states, as mentioned above, for the 3rd annual IVE Winter Youth Festival. The youth had the opportunity to attend several workshops on various topics (such as Gender Identity and Purity) and play sports. Later that evening there was another opportunity for the youth to go to confession during Adoration. At the conclusion of Evening Prayer and Benediction, the youth returned to hall for dinner and the final “fogon”.
Sunday morning, the youth woke up and attended Mass at the parish, afterwards there was had brunch.
We would like to thank all the youth for making this March for life and winter youth festival possible, without you this would not have been possible.