Moscow, March 28, 2017
Thousands of all ages throughout Romania and the Republic of Moldova took the streets on Saturday, March 25 to march in favor of life and against abortion. This year’s “Help the Mother and Child! They Depend on You” program was the seventh annual Romanian national March for Life.
Participants marched through the streets of more than 138 cities, carrying banners and the Romanian national flag, as the Basilica News Agency reports.
According to Romania’s “Students for Life” association, more than 110,000 young people, families with children, and elderly persons, including hierarchs and clergy marched throughout the nation, singing and chanting slogans in support of life and families. In Bucharest, the demonstration concluded with a concert entitled “Live for Life” in Youth park.
The cities with the biggest turnout were Bacău (10,000 participants), Oradea (11,000 participants) and Bucharest (8,000 participants). Compared to the 2016 march, the number of participating cities rose by 26% (110 cities in 2016), while the number of participants rose by almost 50% (nearly 75,000 in 2016).
The events do not have a single organizer nationwide, but rely instead on independent organizers who represent different local pro-life organizations and institutions. In some of the 138 cities, the march was held on March 24 or 26.
The marches were not an official action of the Romanian Orthodox Church, but were blessed by the Church’s Holy Synod.
The March for Life 2017 was the crowning piece in a series of pro-life events entitled Pro-Life Month 2017, with the theme “Help the Mother and Child! They Depend on You.” The month of events provided the opportunity to debate the necessity, possibility and efficiency of supporting women in pregnancy crisis.
The most important solutions proposed, among others, in order to support women in pregnancy crisis are establishing counseling agencies specializing in pregnancy crisis and granting a pregnancy allowance starting from the fourteenth week of pregnancy (which represents the legal limit for getting an abortion on demand in Romania).
The marches coincided with the new calendar celebration of the great feast of the Annunciation, when the Lord Jesus Christ was conceived in the womb of the Most-Holy Theotokos by the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit. Of course, the Church understands that Christ was alive as man in her womb immediately. Furthermore, we see in the Gospel passage and icons of the meeting between the Theotokos and St. Elizabeth that St. John the Baptist and the Lord recognized one another while yet in the womb.
Updated March 30, 2017