By Emily Drooby
In 1985, Denise Shetty discovered she was pregnant. During this time, she was also taking medication for Graves Disease.
Shetty, said, “My endocrinologist, when he confirmed I was pregnant said, ‘well, you probably should terminate this pregnancy’…I was just blindly pro-life and I said no.”
Doctors told her she could die, but Shetty took a chance and gave birth to a healthy daughter.
Shetty, said, “She got married and she has three beautiful babies and so I have three beautiful grandchildren and if I had aborted her, this story never would have happened.”
Together, they attended the 46th annual March for Life. Her daughter, Erin Sweet said, “Just really grateful because even though stuff could have turned out really bad, she loved me enough to give me life.
They joined hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers gathered at the National Mall to fight for life.
Vice President Mike Pence told the crowd, “We’re the Pences and we’re Pro-Life.”
For the second year in a row, President Donald Trump addressed the crowd, “I will always defend the first amendment in our Declaration of Independence, the right for life.”
President Trump added, “Today, I signed a letter to congress to make clear that if they send any legislation to my desk that weakens the protection of human life, I will issue a veto.”
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops issuing a statement following the President’s comments, that read, “We are deeply grateful for the President’s pro-life commitment, and for all the actions this administration has taken to protect unborn children and their mothers from the violence of abortion. We look forward to working with Congress and the Administration to advance policies that value human life and dignity from conception to natural death.”
The march buzzing with pro-life activists from all over the country, all with one goal in mind.
March for Life participant, Anthony Venditti, said, “You just have to stand up for what’s right and I believe it’s right.”
This year’s march theme, unique from day one, the idea that pro-life is pro-science, that life begins at fertilization.
Julia Wierzbicki, said, “We are all studying some sort of science or STEM and it’s so important to know that they’re not two separate things, they’re one in the same and it’s so important to know that science actually backs up what we believe in, that pro-life is pro fetus and pro child.”
The march, marks the anniversary of both Roe V Wade and Doe V Bolton, Supreme Court decisions that legalized abortion throughout a woman’s pregnancy.
March for Life participant, Bridget Howard, said, “Abortion is just such a horrible, horrible thing. Women deserve so much better, children deserve better.”
Marchers walked across the National Mall, stopping in front of the Supreme Court, a nod to Roe V Wade.
Mary Buck and her children, including her newborn son Jacob, are in Washington D.C. for the March For Life. Back in 2014 Mary buck’s daughter grace, was born with Trisomy 18. That’s a genetic condition that is usually fatal.
“I carried my daughter Grace through the pregnancy and she was with us for 46 days and then she passed away and she was very much a blessing to our family,” said Buck.
Discovery of the disease can sometimes lead to an abortion – buck says she was grateful for the time she was able to spend with her daughter.
“We really just let God and our daughter Grace lead the way,” she said.
Buck and her children are some of the ten thousand people, 500 seminarians, 50 deacons, 250 priests, and 39 bishops who attended the opening Mass for the National Prayer Vigil For Life at the Basilica Of The National Shrine Of The Immaculate Conception
“It’s like heaven on earth, seeing everyone here together, especially the amount of youth that are here, is very hopeful,” said Debra Carey Westerly from Rhode Island.
Archbishop Joseph Naumann, the Chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, was the celebrant for the vigil’s opening Mass. During his homily and an interview, he discussed what conservative Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court could mean for Roe V Wade, which legalized abortion throughout a woman’s pregnancy.
“Certainly with the reconfiguration of the court there is some hope that might happen. But I think even if that were to happen we have to be prepared to fight battles in every state across the country,” he said.
Pilgrims listened intently to Archbishop Naumann, and for so many, the vigil prepares them for not only for Friday’s march, but also their continued fight for life.
“There’s so many young people, religious sisters, the priests, the deacons, the seminarians, the bishops the cardinals, it just brings so much hope it’s kinda a shot in the arm to keep on keeping on, what we are doing,” said Colleen from Donohoe Boston.