11th annual National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children takes place at 225 locations across U.S., including Detroit
DETROIT — Nearly 100 people gathered in the cemetery behind Assumption Grotto Parish in Detroit on Sept. 9 to pay their respects to more than two dozen babies killed in abortions, a solemn reminder of the human cost of laws and policies that promote the destruction of life, speakers said during the vigil.
The service was part of the 11th annual National Day of Remembrance for Unborn Children, jointly sponsored by Michigan-based Citizens for a Pro-life Society in Michigan and the Illinois-based Pro-Life Action League. Across the country, vigils took place at more than 225 locations, including several in southeast Michigan.
The Assumption Grotto event was sponsored by the Right to Life of Grosse Pointe/Harper Woods affiliate and the Macomb County affiliates.
Participants in the annual event host prayer vigils with visits to the burial places of the unborn victims and other memorial locations. Participation has grown exponentially.
The Detroit prayer vigil included readings from sacred Scripture, prayer intentions, and the solemn reading of the names given to the 30 babies buried there. The Knights of Columbus color guard placed a wreath on the memorial gravesite.
Assumption Grotto’s cemetery has one of the 56 known gravesites for unborn children in the country. On June 27, 2008, a funeral Mass and burial took place at the parish for aborted babies retrieved that year from the trash dumpster behind an abortion clinic in Livonia. Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Southfield also has a gravesite for 14 unborn children, and a second grave where 23 aborted infants are buried.
Ken Snodgrass, pastor of Thy Word is Truth Ministries, was one of the community leaders who spoke at the Detroit event.
“We are here to humanize aborted children,” Snodgrass said. “No baby should be treated as chemical waste or garbage. God created each and every one of us.”
Snodgrass challenged those in attendance to get involved in the movement to end abortion.
“What can we do?” he asked. Snodgrass recommended several things: voting for pro-life candidates; becoming educated about abortion and talking to family, friends and coworkers; financially supporting organizations that fight abortion, and giving hope and healing to those affected by abortion.
But Snodgrass emphasized there's one way everyone can help.
“Prayer is the most important thing we can do,” he said. “The prayer of a righteous person availeth much.”
Kisha Martin, representing BirthChoice Image Clear Ultrasound mobile pregnancy center, also spoke at the event. The mobile center travels throughout the Detroit area offering free pregnancy testing, ultrasounds and counseling to women in crisis pregnancies.
Martin said she has firsthand knowledge of the damage abortion can do to a woman.
“I have experienced an abortion and all the psychological things you go through afterward,” Martin told those gathered. “I love what God has chosen me to do.”
The final speaker, Annette Longtine from Right to Life of Michigan, reminded those in attendance to mark their calendars for Nov. 8, the Michigan March for Life in Lansing. The event will take place one year to the day when Michigan passed Proposal 3, placing the “right” to abortion in the state constitution. Longtine asked those attending to help send the message that the fight against abortion is not over.
“The March is on a Wednesday,” she said. “Our legislators will be there. They will see us.”
Longtine said the state March for Life will include a pre-rally concert and “a great lineup of speakers.” Bus transportation is being organized for those interested throughout Metro Detroit. To RSVP and for more information visit rtl.org/events/march.