On Saturday, January 21, the day before the 39th memorial of the infamous Roe V Wade decision that legalized abortion, 250-300 pro-lifers participated in the 2nd annual March For Life: Treasure Coast. The event began at “A Woman’s World Medical Center” in Ft. Pierce, the only surgical abortion clinic on the Treasure Coast, with silent prayer, followed by the march to the Ft. Pierce City Hall where many pro-life speakers gave their messages of Life. The beautiful weather was only outshone by the love displayed for children, women, families and society as a whole.
The 3 part event began with Silent Prayer at the abortion clinic at 12th St. and Delaware Ave. The Silent Prayer was done in solidarity with the children in the womb who can’t speak for themselves while allowing the ecumenical crowd to pray in the tradition of their preference. The corner of 12th and Delaware is a microcosm of the fight for Life, with the abortion clinic on one corner, the Pregnancy Care Center on the other corner, and the Fort Pierce Magnet School of the Arts K-8 School across the street. No better place to speak up for children than in an area where within 1 block kills, saves and educates children.
At noon, the pro-life faithful began their .8 mile march to the Ft. Pierce City Hall. Led by Jackie and Dom Buccola carrying the March For Life banner and The Knights of Columbus St. Francis Assisi Council in full regalia, the pro-lifers peacefully carried their signs while being safely escorted by Ft. Pierce’s Finest. The line of marchers, including moms and babies in strollers, seemed to stretch forever. After about 45 minutes of educating the neighborhoods, the last marcher arrived at City Hall to some praise and worship led by Pastor Bryan Longworth of Covenant Tabernacle.
The speaking portion of the event was kicked off by emcee Dr. Michael Hofstee, who spearheaded the victory convincing the Children’s Services Council to stop local funding of local Planned Parenthood Programs. Many local clergy, ministry heads and pro-life advocates spoke from their hearts about what their church, ministry or organization does to promote the Culture of Life on the Treasure Coast (see the information below that lists many of these speakers and the information regarding their ministry). The largest yearly gathering held outside City Hall was witnessed by many drivers by, with many honking and giving a positive thumbs up. A love offering of $500 was collected from the generous crowd, which helped pay for march expenses, with money left over donated to CareNet and The Pregnancy Care Center. The event closed with the help of from Mr. Keith from the Treasure Coast Christian Academy, who donated the use of their bus to shuttle marchers back to their cars at 12th and Delaware. Special thanks also goes to Pastor Longworth and “A Faster PC Computer”, and Dr. Hofstee and his Chiropractic Office who donated the money to print the informational fliers, and Marty Lorenzo of “At Your Service Tees” for donating pro-life t-shirts.
The March For Life: Treasure Coast was a combination of bad news, good news and great news. The bad news was there were less participants than the debut year, but the good news was there was still 250-300 participants. The great news was that we thought we had 250-300 last year, but after counting the people this year now realize we must have had 400-500 last year!! We are already planning the event for next year, which will be on Sat. Jan 19th and may have an additional indoor portion with music, more ministries and speakers. Next year, not only because it’s the 40th anniversary, but because of the current assault on religious freedom and the March taking place right around the Presidential Inauguration, will be an extremely important year. So pencil it in and let’s make March For Life: Treasure Coast 2013 an event that will transform the Treasure Coast into the Life Coast.
· Pastor Bryan Longworth: Pastor of Covenant Tabernacle Church, Port St. Lucie; President of SOHL of the Treasure Coast; President of Personhood Florida
· Don Kazimir: Director of Respect Life for the Catholic Diocese of Palm Beach
· Sue Chess: Executive Director of CareNet Pregnancy Services of the Treasure Coast
· Pauline Pavlick: Pregnancy Care Center
· Donna Gardner: Director of Rachael’s Vineyard Post Abortion Retreats
· Rev. John Bower: Pastor of The Church of the Holy Comforter, Stuart
· Duane Berreth: President of Friends For Life
· Fr. Yves Geffard: Pastor of Notre Dame Catholic Church/Haitian Mission, Ft. Pierce
· John J. Giorgis : Pro Life Director of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Knights of Columbus Council #13047.
· Jim Thoma: Local Director of 40 Days For Life/Sidewalk Counseling