(CNSNews.com) – The Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod (LCMS) has joined pro-life activists around the country in expressing concern about President Barack Obama’s pro-abortion stance and will join thousands who are expected to gather on the National Mall Thursday for the 36th annual March for Life.
“It is especially crucial this year that Americans speak loudly and clearly to our new federal administration to demonstrate that respect for life is a primary concern for millions of Americans,” Gerald B. Kieschnick, president of the LCMS, said in a statement released Wednesday.
“Our recent national, state, and local elections have heightened concern among many Americans regarding issues surrounding the sanctity of human life,” Kieschnick said.
“The LCMS since its inception has steadfastly proclaimed the miracle of human life from conception until natural death,” Kieschnick said. “As we march with other concerned Americans, we underscore our belief that Christ Jesus sanctified all human life by His birth, life, death and resurrection for all mankind.”
The March for Life, marking the anniversary of the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing abortion, is expected to draw as many as 200,000 people, including other religious and several political leaders.
Reps. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Mike Pence (R-Ind.) are expected to speak, and Cardinal Justin F. Rigali, chairman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee for Pro-Life Activities, is conducting Mass before the event.
Ordinary women and men will testify about the damage abortion has done in their lives, including those who are part of the “Silent No More” campaign.
For the past eight years, President George W. Bush has addressed marchers on the Mall via video.
Nellie Gray, founder and president of March for Life, told CNSNews.com that she invited President Obama but has not received a response to the letter her organization sent to the White House on Jan. 15.
The rally is set to begin at noon along 4th Street on the National Mall. Following the rally, marchers will travel along Constitution Avenue to the Capitol.