Each summer I have the joy of welcoming to the Priests for Life office in New York three separate groups of young pro-life activists. This summer was no exception. I usually have a Q and A session with them, and listen to their own experiences of defending the lives of the unborn. We have some pizza, take a photo, and I let them go through our warehouse of pro-life books, brochures, audios and videos. (I remember when I was just starting with Priests for Life, Fr. Paul Marx at Human Life International let me do the same thing at his pro-life warehouse in Gaithersburg, MD!)
The first group of young activists who came by this summer were the interns that my friend and colleague Chris Slattery, who runs Expectant Mother Care in NY City, trains each summer. Most of them are from Europe. They spend many hours on the streets of NY City, in front of abortion mills, saving lives and replacing despair with hope in the hearts of parents who don’t know where to turn.
The second group were the walkers from Crossroads. They walk from the West Coast to Washington DC each summer, speaking in parishes, wearing t-shirts that say “Pro-life” as they walk along the highways of America, distribute literature, and talk to countless
people about the ongoing tragedy of abortion.
The third group were the interns who work with our own Youth Outreach Director, Bryan Kemper. These young activists go to Christian concerts that are held in various parts of the country during the summer. They have a pro-life booth and talk to countless people not only to educate them about abortion, but to minister to them. Many of those they meet have had abortions, and some need immediate help in finding alternatives to abortion.
All of these youth, from all three groups, are not simply the “future” leaders of the pro-life movement. They are exercising leadership now. They are leading, by word and example, as they inspire the zeal and passion in all around them – young and old – to make the pro-life cause the top priority in our lives. That’s why I love to welcome them each year!