Published January 4, 2007
The Atlanta Archdiocese will sponsor a variety of pro-life events in January, culminating with the Mass for the Unborn on Monday, Jan. 22, at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.
Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory and priests of the archdiocese will concelebrate the Mass at 10 a.m. on the 34th anniversary of the legalization of abortion on demand in the United States. A rosary for life will be prayed before Mass at 9:30 a.m. in the Shrine.
The Mass precedes the Together for Life memorial service held at noon on the steps of the state Capitol a block from the Shrine by Georgia Right to Life, a nondenominational pro-life organization.
Mass attendees are encouraged to join other concerned citizens from across the state at the memorial service. It will feature presentations by Archbishop Gregory, by Zell Miller, former U.S. senator and Georgia governor, and by Mike Stone, senior pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Blackshear.
At the conclusion of the program all may join in a police-escorted silent memorial walk for one mile, which begins and ends at the Capitol steps.
The events mark the Jan. 22, 1973, U.S. Supreme Court rulings legalizing abortion through nine months of pregnancy in the Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton decisions. Since then over 47 million unborn babies in the United States have been aborted.
All are encouraged to join with others in these and several other archdiocesan memorial events to mourn the unborn babies, and all who have been hurt by abortion. To help people attending all the Jan. 22 events, the archdiocesan pro-life office makes boxed lunches available that can be ordered in advance.
The night before the Mass for the Unborn, a program entitled “Rise Up for Life” will be held on Sunday, Jan. 21, from 6 to 11 p.m. at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Atlanta. It will include Mass at
7 p.m. and speakers, featuring Dr. Alveda C. King, pastoral associate of Priests for Life, founder of King for America, Inc., and daughter of the late civil rights activist Rev. A.D. King and niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
The program will be followed by a teen lock-in for seventh- through 12th-grade students, continuing “24 hours of prayer and activism.” The students, following the lock-in, will meet with their state legislators on Monday morning, Jan. 22, concerning their views on life issues and then participate in the Together for Life memorial service and silent walk. Registration is required for the lock-in, which is held in cooperation with the archdiocesan youth ministry office. The Mass and program preceding the lock-in are open to all.
In additional pro-life educational opportunities, the Cathedral of Christ the King’s Respect Life Committee is offering programs on Friday, Jan. 12, and Friday, Jan. 19. On Jan. 12 Mass will be celebrated at the Cathedral at 6:15 p.m. followed by a 7 p.m. program on “The Mystery Behind the Power to Love.” Father Jack Durkin, pastor of St. Monica Church in Duluth, and Tom and Diane Houlihan, Family Honor program speakers, are the presenters.
On Jan. 19 Stephanie Wood, host of the first worldwide radio show for Catholic youth, will give two talks aimed at different audiences. At 1:30 p.m. Wood will speak on “how to help young people become pro-life leaders” in a talk designed especially for those working with young people but open to all. The afternoon talk will allow more time for interaction with youth ministers, and she will share specific ideas that can be integrated into parish ministries to raise up today’s teens and young adults to successfully fight for the sanctity of all human life.
At 7 p.m. her talk, designed especially for parents but open to all, will be on “strategies for raising up the next generation for life.” Mass will be celebrated at 6:15 p.m. before her talk.
Wood is coordinator of NextWaveFaithful, a youth and young adult division of Family Life Center International. A convert to Catholicism, she speaks to youth and young adults on life, love, purpose and truth, faith, evangelization, purity, home schooling, campus life and relationships. She has been a frequent guest on Catholic programs, including EWTN’s “Life on the Rock” and “The Journey Home.”
She co-hosts EWTN radio’s “Faith and Family” with her father Steve Wood.