The Schools of Saint Mary Attends the 46th Annual March for Life

The Schools of Saint Mary Attends the 46th Annual March for Life

It was 6:00 a.m. on Friday, January 18th, but St. Mary’s Church was filled with young people. Over forty students in grades 7-12 gathered together–along with chaperones Anna Green (high school theology teacher), Damien Quinn (middle school history teacher), Kevin White (high school theology teacher), and Catherine Dillon (parish volunteer)–for Mass with Father Jiha Lim before departing on coach buses bound for Washington, D.C. These students had chosen to spend the day in solidarity with the many others who have gathered every year since Roe v. Wade made abortion legal nationwide, to stand up for life.

An estimated 650,000 people–mostly youth and young adult–packed the streets of our nation’s capital that day, and the Schools of Saint Mary were proud to be among them. After beginning the pilgrimage with Mass, students began the five hour drive to Washington, D.C. Along the way, students and chaperones prayed a group rosary, stopped off for breakfast, and enjoyed light entertainment such as movies and music. Filled with joy and excitement, the group arrived in Washington, D.C. eager to gather with others from Long Island who were attending the March.

The group from St. Mary’s was met with a warm welcome by Bishop John O. Barres, shepherd of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. Students spoke with the Bishop for a few minutes before enjoying some brief social time with other Catholic Long Islanders, such as those from the parishes of St. Patrick and St. Rocco in Glen Cove, with whom the St. Mary’s group walked during the March.  Students pointed out the signs around them which indicated people coming from Kentucky, Indiana, Virginia, Montana…pilgrims from across the nation who had chosen to make their voices heard on such an important issue. “It was amazing to see so many people coming together for such an amazing movement,” Kaitlyn Pecoraro ‘22 remarked, “I couldn’t believe that most of the people were around my age.”

The response from students on the March was both that they felt empowered to be part of such a positive movement, and also one of surprise. “I was surprised so many people who had been born from or experienced unexpected pregnancy were there supporting the cause,” Christopher Sims ‘21 shared. He was also impressed “that people were there who regretted their abortions, who had the courage to let that be known.” These witnesses with first-hand experience of the pain and hurt abortion causes left a lasting impression on the students. “My friend and I had just been talking about whether or not aborting a baby is okay if you were sexually assaulted,” Diana-Abasi Archibong ‘21 recalled, “And [on the March] I was very moved by the posters that said ‘I/my family member was the result of rape.’ These posters showed me that a beautiful life can be the result of even the worst tragedy, and that abortion is never the answer.”

At the same time, students appreciated the levity and joy surrounding them. “Being with friends, the positive mood, people singing or playing music around us,” Anthony Mauceri ‘19 listed among the highlights of the trip. He was also excited to see people he knew from his old school who were also marching. “It was cold,” laughed Isabella Banayan ‘19, “But so worth it. The atmosphere was cool and everyone was cheering. Also…the dinner we had was delicious!”

The March for Life provided a wonderful opportunity for the Schools of Saint Mary to come together with others from across the United States who oppose abortion as the greatest human rights violation of our time. Saint Mary’s is proud of our commitment to stand up for the unborn and all vulnerable human life. You can view photos from the March for Life here.