On January 25, the 40th observance of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion, an estimated 400,000 individuals converged on Washington, DC, for the March for Life. Fifteen bishops of the Anglican Church in North America joined a significant number of other Anglicans for the event which emphasizes the sanctity of life. The bishops participated in an ecumenical worship service, a rally on the Mall and the March itself, walking up Constitution Avenue to the Supreme Court.
“I am honored to stand, along with my fellow bishops of the Anglican Church in North America, in recognition of the millions lost through abortion and to demonstrate our commitment to uphold the sanctity of life for all of God’s children,” said Archbishop Robert Duncan.
Speaking to a reporter during the event, Bishop John Guernsey who issued the invitation to his brother bishops, noted: “The active participation in the March for Life of more than a third of our bishops is a very public demonstration that a commitment to life is at the core of who we are as Anglican Christians.” This commitment is reflected in the founding documents (Constitution and Canons) of the province:
“God, and not man, is the creator of human life. The unjustified taking of life is sinful. Therefore, all members and clergy are called to promote and respect the sanctity of every human life from conception to natural death.” (Constitution and Canons, Title II, Canon 8, Section 3)
Anglicans for Life, under the leadership of Georgette Forney, also played a key role in the event. Mrs. Forney organized testimonies from individuals representing the Silent No More Campaign, which helps women and men who have experienced abortion “to find healing, forgiveness and reconciliation through the love of Christ.”
The March for Life was founded in 1974 by Nellie Gray, who died last year at the age of 86. The March has been held annually for the last 39 years.