Father Peter West of Priests for Life will speak at the 28th Annual Idaho March for Life Rally Saturday, Jan. 27 on the Statehouse Steps in Boise.
Idaho Catholics are encouraged to join the nearly 1,000 people expected to participate in the march starting at 1 p.m. at Julia Davis Park on Capitol Boulevard and proceeding north on the boulevard to the Idaho Statehouse.
Other marches protesting the Jan. 22, 1973, Supreme Court decision, Roe vs. Wade, that legalized abortion on demand in the U.S. are planned in Moscow and Coeur d'Alene.
The Moscow March for Life will take place Saturday, Jan. 20 starting at Logos School parking lot behind McDonald's at 1 p.m. and ending at Friendship Square. People who are not able to march are encouraged to meet at the square at about 1:30 p.m.
Participants are urged to bring signs and children are encouraged to attend.
The Coeur d' Alene March for Life will also take place Jan. 20 starting at 10 a.m. on Sherman Avenue. Participants will march to St. Thomas Church for a rally. Between 200 and 300 people are expected to march.
Charlotte Homolka, Right to Life of Idaho area director, will speak to the crowd on partial birth abortion and show a video. She will also provide information on the abortion pill RU-486. Hot drinks and cookies will be served.
The National March for Life in Washington D. C., which draws thousands, is planned for Jan. 22. The theme will be "Motherhood, Fatherhood and Childhood Begin at Fertilization," which was inspired by the approval for personal use in 2000 of RU-486, the French abortion pill.
Nellie Gray, who has organized the National March for Life since the first one in 1974, said President-elect George W. Bush has received an invitation to attend the March for Life but has not yet responded.
The National Prayer Vigil for Life will start at 8 p.m. Jan. 21 at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. At about 10:30 p.m. after the Mass, the group "Mothers of Mary" will lead a rosary. A Byzantine night prayer service, confessions and holy hours conducted by seminarians are planned throughout the night.
Cardinal Bernard F. Law, Boston, will celebrate the end of the vigil with a 7:30 a.m. Mass at the Basilica on Jan. 22.
In Boise, besides Father West, Right to Life of Idaho President Jeannette McAllister will speak at the rally and local singing artist Kimberly Beau will sing.
McAllister has sent invitations to pastors throughout the Treasure Valley to attend the Idaho March for Life and to invite their congregations to do the same.
Father West is scheduled to celebrate a Life Mass at St. John's Cathedral, Boise, at 11:30 a.m. prior to the march. All are invited to participate.
Following the March for Life, the St. John's Cathedral Knights of Columbus will host a reception with hot chocolate and cookies in the cathedral basement. In a Jan. 8 statement from New Haven, Conn., the newly installed Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson reaffirmed the resolve of all Knights of Columbus in the U.S. "that our nation will someday be 'a people of life and a people for life' .... Nothing will deter the Knights of Columbus from this commitment. "
Father West is scheduled to celebrate the 5:30 p.m. Mass Jan. 27 at St. Mark's Parish, Boise, and the 12:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. LifeTeen Mass Jan. 28 at St. Mark's. He will also celebrate the 9:45 a.m. Jan. 28 Mass at Holy Apostles Parish, Meridian.
A pro-life activist since 1986, Father West has been in ministry with Priests for Life since April 1998. Priests for Life, a non-profit private association under canon law of the Catholic Church, is a pro-life network of over 40,000 priests and deacons. Its mission is to train and motivate the clergy to be more effectively pro-life. Father West travels the country spreading the Gospel of Life.
He holds a masters degree in theology and was ordained for the Archdiocese of Newark, N.J., in 1991.
Father West was founder and director of Amicus, a successful Catholic youth adult group for men and women. He has also worked with youth as a teacher and youth group leader.
In his pastoral ministry he has preached frequently on the topic of abortion. He has been able to dissuade women from having abortions and has helped women who have had abortions find healing and peace.