On Saturday, March 29, Human Life International’s Rome office, in collaboration with Militia Christi, organized a pro-life demonstration at Tiber Island in Rome, Italy in remembrance of lives lost through abortion.
This memorial event in Italy started more than twenty years ago after the public became aware that the bodies of some aborted babies had been thrown into the Tiber River by hospitals that did abortions.
The gathering started with a brief exhortation given by HLI Rome Office Executive Director Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro on the importance of the pro-life struggle. Msgr. Barreiro then led those in attendance, about 70 people, in praying a decade of the Rosary.
After several other pro-life speeches, the crowd descended from the short hill top where they were standing and moved to the riverside. Msgr. Barreiro blessed flowers that were thrown into the water by a young boy named Michael, who as a younger child was baptized and given First Communion by Msgr. Barreiro. The flowers symbolized the children who were aborted and whose bodies were thrown into the river by hospital staff more than twenty years ago.
Msgr. Barreiro blessing the flowers.
There is a Catholic hospital on Tiber Island, San Giovanni Calibita, but no abortions take place there. The location where the pro-lifers gathered was chosen to provide high public visibility of the demonstration, being located in a central part of Rome by the Garibaldi Bridge that unites central Rome with Transtevere. There have been occasions in the past in which the demonstrators were violently attacked, and even needed to be hospitalized. But this year the anti-life protestors were reasonable peaceful, with only a couple of pro-abortion young women yelling insults from a safe distance.
It is only when we completely devalue the dignity of the human person that abortion can be sustained, and the bodies of the unborn treated so irreverently. Pray for the protection of the dignity and sacredness of all human life from conception until natural death, and for the conversion of those who support abortion.
LifeNews.com Note: Reprinted with permission from Human Life International. Adam Cassandra is a Communications Specialist at Human Life International.