May 26, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - In addition to the over 15,000 Canadians on Parliament Hill May 12th for the largest-ever Canadian National March for Life, over 3,300 more, from Victoria, British Columbia to St. John’s, Newfoundland, gathered in major cities during regional marches in solidarity with the unborn.
Many provinces set records of attendance, most notably in the number of youth and young families joining the march. Newfoundland had 30 participants, 80 in Nova Scotia, 325 in Manitoba, 400 in Saskatchewan, 475 in Alberta, and 2,000 in British Columbia. Numbers from New Brunswick are still coming in, where in the past up to 400 have gathered with bishops and numerous Members of the Legislative Assembly.
Under a bright, shining sun, a large crowd, from the very young to seasoned pro-lifers, marched through the streets of Victoria to the Provincial Legislature after opening Masses celebrated by Archbishop J. Michael Miller of Vancouver, Victoria’s Bishop Richard Gagnon, and Bishop David Monroe of Kamloops. (Click here for video coverage of the B.C. march)
“It’s certainly to inspiring to see the enthusiasm of young people and to have the sense that things indeed can change,” Archbishop Miller told the crowd of 2,000. “This can become a culture of life.”
In Manitoba, Archbishop James Weisgerber of Winnipeg and Archbishop Albert LeGatt of St. Boniface also joined marchers. Many organizers concurred that the enthusiastic, youthful crowds of students were a sign of hope to the pro-life cause.
Participants at the regional marches heard from an array of clergy members and prominent pro-life voices, including Silent No More representatives, international pro-life speaker Rebecca Kiessling and Alex Schadenberg from the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition in Victoria, and Jojo Ruba of the Canadian Center for Bio-Ethical Reform in Regina.
All told, over 18,000 Canadians, including 16 bishops, members of federal and provincial parliament, and huge numbers of youth attended the many marches in defence of life.
The complete list of bishops in attendance at the various marches is as follows:
Archbishop Terrence Prendergast, Ottawa
Archbishop Pedro Lopez Quintana, Apostolic Nuncio
Archbishop Gérald Cyprien Lacroix, Quebec City
Archbishop Brendan O’Brien, Kingston
Archbishop Thomas Collins, Toronto
Bishop Nicola De Angelis, C.F.I.C., Peterborough
Bishop Noël Simard, Sault-Ste-Marie
Bishop Michael Mulhall, Pembroke
Bishop Paul-André Durocher, Alexandria-Cornwall
Bishop Richard Gagnon, Victoria
Bishop David Monroe, Kamloops
Bishop James Weisgerber, Winnipeg
Bishop Albert LeGatt, St. Boniface
Eparch Stephen Chmilar, Toronto and Eastern Canada Ukrainian Eparchy
Eparch John Pazak, C.Ss.R., Eparch of the Byzantine Slovak Church
Bishop Bryan Bayda, CSsR, Ukrainian Eparchy of Saskatoon