Teen Testimonies from the March for Life

Here are three testimonies from youth who went with our group to the March for Life in DC: 

“My name is Stephen, this was my third time attending the March for Life. I am glad to say that this March for Life was the most fruitful of the three trips I have taken, even though the weather was the most miserable. We had a tiring bus ride up to Washington D.C., on which I did not even manage to get a minute of sleep even though I tried. Yet, I was determined to go into the actual March with a positive attitude and with a gusto. During the March, I walked with five others in the Youth Group, all whom were fairly close friends of mine. We prayed parts of a Rosary as we passed groups who were praying, as well as talk about the significance of Abortion and about the reality of it in our everyday lives. I believe the reason that this weekend experience during the March for Life was the most fruitful for me, was because of my openness entering the event. Thanks to the opportunity offered by Brad and the Columbus Youth Group, our Youth Group, including myself, was able to partake in Adoration and the Sacrament of Confession on the way to Washington D.C. It was at this time that it really hit me that the Pro-Life Movement that the March for Life represented didn’t just address abortion and euthanasia. The concept was much larger and much more beautiful. Yes, the lives of unborn babies are important. Yes, the lives of those whom are older in society are important. But aren’t the lives of those whom we interact with everyday just as important? I learned that to uphold and support the Culture of Life, I needed to respect all life, including the lives of my family, friends, classmates, and everyone that I encountered.
“I believe that it was through this weekend that God was really able to get His message through to me. I learned how I was called to live out a truly Catholic lifestyle, a lifestyle that would be respectful to all that I encounter and to those I won’t even encounter face-to-face. A lifestyle where prayer would be the center of my life and that would help to focus all of my other activities including school, sports, and my friendships around. As a result of this March for Life, God has entered into my life as he never has before. It took three years for me to finally understand what God had put straight in front of me, but now that I finally understand and accept this, my life has taken a whole new meaning entirely. To conclude, I would challenge all of you to focus on how you treat others, especially people that you normally have a hard time respecting. I challenge you to pray more often, by setting a measurable and attainable goal, and really work on allowing God to be the center of your life.”
The week before the March for Life I was thinking about what I could personally do to end the culture of death. After praying about it I learned that if I become the saint God made me to be, and I pray for  everyone around me to become the saints He made them to be, this will spread. If I pray daily, offer up my sufferings to God, and do all God wants me to do for Him and with His help I can become the saint He made me to be.
I’m kinda one of those people who love to procrastinate. So I totally forgot about the March for Life until about 3 hours before we left. I threw all my stuff in a bag, prayed I hadn’t smashed my snacks, threw the stuff on the bus, and got on. Then Brad decided to pop in a movie. I had heard of “October Baby”, but I had never seen it. Apparently, I was out of the loop, because practically everyone on the bus screamed “I LOVE THAT MOVIE!” I shrugged, but watched, just the same. The movie was about a 19- year old girl who survived a failed abortion. She was adopted by a loving couple, but she never knew that they were not her real parents.The girl later found out the truth, but also discovered that she was not the only baby in her biological mom’s womb. She had a twin brother, named Jonathan. He and his sister barely escaped the abortion, but 8 hours after the delivery, Jonathan passed away. At that moment, I suddenly felt woozy. I could never imagine losing my twin brother, Peter, because words can not express how much he means to me. He is, as my grandma refers to him, “my sidekick.” On an even more personal note, I was horrified to hear that sometimes women abort their child because it has a disability.

This really hit me, because before Peter and I were born, my parents found on an ultrasound that one of their twins had a complex heart problem, called tricuspid atresia, ultimately resulting in two open-heart surgeries, and high medical bills. I was that baby. And as I marched in the cold snow of D.C., amid prayers and cheers from other pro-lifers, I felt tears come to my eyes. I thought about the millions of aborted babies killed only because they were disabled, or had autism, or maybe even tricuspid atresia. And I am so infinitely grateful, that for the sake of myself, and my siblings, John Paul, William, Peter, and a little miscarriaged baby named Maria, my parents chose life.

Grace , 8th Grade, St. Gertrude School