Here are some of the exceptional things that I think were accomplished at the March for Life and the Month for Life 2019 „Unique from Day One”. Please write back to me about such premieres or extraordinary things, especially since I have selected mostly of them from Bucharest!
I’m starting with the biggest mistake, which I’m ashamed to introduce in the selection below: in 2019, the estimate before the Month for life, made by the local organizers was overtaken by 100 (the estimate was over 500; finally there were 670)! No one expected that after 2014, 2015 and 2017, 2019 will be the fourth year in which the number of places where pro-life activities during the Month for life took place will be doubled compared to the previous year! After we counted the total number, the Pro Life Price Charming told us that if we want to grow the number in the same way in 2020, we have to go to neighboring countries!
1. The largest number of places so far in which the March or other pro-life activities were held during the month of March, the Month for life: 667 cities and villages in Romania and the Republic of Moldova.
2. During the Month for life, the opening of a new support center for pregnancy crisis in Bacau was announced.
3. Adolescents, young people and young families with children represent over 60% of the participants.
4. For the second consecutive year a special hymn of the march was composed: by Olivia Baer, student from Iasi, „Unique from day one”.
5. Leaders of important pro-life organizations in the European Union came to Romania to participate in the March for Life, including Paul Ginoux Defermon, vice-president of the Choisir la Vie Association (Association for the Defense of Life), one of the five associations organizing the March for Life in Paris.
6. More than 50 children’s reading workshops with pro-life books written by Veronica Iani were held in various cities: „Waiting for the Baby,” „Baby – A Story from the tummy,” „Ioana – A Story about Down Syndrome” and „Tudor – A story about adoption”.
7. The „For Life” magazine, edited by the Students for Life Association, appeared in three local editions, personalized by local organizers: Bucharest, Iasi, and Chisinau.
8. The Cross for Life in Bucharest had a record number of participants: over 400 adults and over 400 children. The largest number of participants at the march was in Iasi, 8,000 people.
9. Vlogs and live videos (videos generally made with the phone and posted on Facebook or YouTube) have been made by organizers or students. There were very few, but their number will grow!
10. For the first time, a professional video clip for inviting people to the march was filmed, based on the press release.
11. For the first time it was possible to post on the same day of the March the transcribed speeches from Bucharest and the video that accompanies the press release after the march. I hope that next year they will be posted video too!
12. Although the national press chose to ignore the most part the event, this year, the press trust of the Romanian Orthodox Church has produced a lot of exceptional quality material about the March and the activities of the Month for Life. Here is one of the reports regarding the March on Trinitas TV.
13. The Patriarch Daniel spoke about the march in the sermon held at the celebration of the Annunciation, on 25th of March.
14. There have been public speakers who have publicly presented the pregnancy crisis they went through. In Romanian society, there is a great reluctance to publicly confess such issues because of the decency in dealing with intimate problems, but which can prove to be damaging also, because in the absence of a confession of the consequences of abortion or the burden of a pregnancy crisis, people are not informed about this and can be mistaken for lack of information.
15. At the marches, people with disabilities and their parents and also people who adopt, participated in discussions and encouraged equal treatment for people with disabilities (in the European Union 96% of children diagnosed with Down syndrome are aborted) and adoption.
16. We’ve talked about difficult situations such as single mothers or children’s death through spontaneous abortion or at birth. A brochure about this issue was edited at Iasi by the president of the Association of Romanian Orthodox Christian Students. The fact that we are not talking about the difficult situations makes the people living them think that the pro-life movement and the Church ignore them, that they are concerned only with the birth of the child, and not the way a single mother will raise the child, or with abortion made on demand, and not the drama that a woman who has a miscarriage can suffer.
17. The event „Babies go to the European Parliament” was organized for the first time, through MEP Catalin Ivan. It was also the second consecutive year when the event „Babies go to the Parliament” was organized, within the Ecumenical Group of the Romanian Parliament.
The highest presence of a politician at the March for Life: non-affiliated MEP Catalin Ivan, who spoke on stage in Bucharest with his wife and their three daughters, all of them wearing T-shirts with the March theme; he said that the issue of the pregnancy crisis is the most important project that the EU should have. His mother went through a pregnancy crisis when she was pregnant with him, and he and his wife were advised to abort two of the three girls with whom his wife was pregnant.
18. On the 31st of March will be held the Volunteer Gala for Life of 2019 dedicated to all institutions, organizations and all volunteers who have supported the March for Life and the Month for Life 2019 „Unique from Day One” in Bucharest. At the Gala, the premiere of the pro-life drama „Instead of a Speech” will take place, the protagonist of which is actress Ioana Picos, who has presented the March for Life in Bucharest in the last years, The text and direction of the show belong to Ivonei Boitan, who spoke at the march about her pregnancy crisis from when she was a student.