The first March for Life ever in Rome, Italy, saw 15,000 people pack the Italian capital city with balloons, banners, prayers and chants and songs celebrating life for unborn children.
The pro-life participants marched from Colosseo to Castel Sant’Angelo with the mayor of the City, Gianni Alemanno, carrying one of the banners. Some of the banners had statements such as ‘More births and less abortions’, “Each abortion is a dead baby”, ‘Let’s not kill the future’, ‘Life starts from the conception’ and ‘Law 194: State extermination.”
Some parliament members took part in the march for the organizers did not allow political party symbols to be presented because they didn’t want the March for Life to have political overtones. According to AGI, some of the politicians in attendance included Maurizio Gasparri, Pdl senators floor leader, Magdi Cristiano Allam, Olimpia Tarzia, Mario Mauro, Lorenzo Fontana, Renato Farina, Maurizio Lupi, Dorina Bianchi, Emanuela Baio Dossi, Ada Spadoni Urbani and Maria Pia Garavaglia, former Health Minister during the Ciampi administration, former deputy mayor of Rome with Veltroni and later Pd parliament member.
The National Catholic Register provided more details about the March for Life in Rome:
The marchers began arriving at the Colosseum around 8am, waving flags and banners under brilliant spring sunshine on May 13. Fittingly, the event fell on the feast of Our Lady of Fatima, as well as Mother’s Day in many countries. But the generally festive and peaceful atmosphere didn’t detract from the uncompromising message the marchers wished to convey.
The route, which had been marked out with balloons during the night by a group of volunteers from southern Italy, proceeded along the Fori Imperiali to Piazza Venezia, turning down the Corso Vittorio Emmanuele and reaching Castel Sant’Angelo before ending up in St. Peter’s Basilica for Mass around midday.
To welcome the first arrivals, two girls from the New Horizons Community, a pro-life group, read pro-life speeches by Blesseds Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II. They were followed by interventions by Dr. Xavier Dor, president of the French organization SOS Tout-Petits, which stresses the important role of fathers in choosing life; and Dr. Gianna Emanuela Molla, the daughter of St. Gianna Beretta Molla, who was canonized in 2004 for choosing to give her own life over having Gianna Emanuela aborted.
Many young people took part, with most marchers coming from northern Italy, followed by representatives from the center of the country and then Italians from the south, with a large participation of Sicilians. Well represented were also citizens from other countries, especially those where pro-life marches have become commonplace, such as the United States, Belgium, France, Spain, Poland and Germany.
The organizers have already planned next year’s Rome March for Life, which is scheduled for May 12, 2013.
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“In Italy, abortion on demand is legal through to the end of the third month of pregnancy,” according to AP. “After a long battle between secular forces and the church, voters upheld the law in a 1981 referendum. There is no major momentum now to rescind the law.”
However, abortion is hurting women in Italy and elsewhere in Europe, as the maker of the mifepristone (RU 486) abortion drug in Europe said in 2009 that 29 women have died.
If the information given to the Italian Pharmaceuticals Agency (AIFA) by European abortion drug maker Exelgyn is correct, then more than twice as many women have died from the abortion drug globally than the pro-life community has thought.
According to a report by the Italian news agency ASCA, Exelgyn provided the figure of 29 women dying from the abortion pill to the Italy Ministry of Health, which, in turn, gave the information to the AIFA drug regulatory agency.