RALEIGH - Hundreds gathered to celebrate and bear witness to the gift of life Jan. 16. Events included the diocesan Mass for Life at Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral, as well as a rally and N.C. March for Life.
During his homily at Mass, Bishop Luis Rafael Zarama asked those present to pause and look into their hearts and see if they are bearing witness to the sanctity of life by expressing their genuine compassion and joy in their own life and the lives of their neighbors.
“When we celebrate and partake in this Mass for Life, we are celebrating life at its beginning, end and everything in between. Until the Lord calls us home at the end of our lives, we must ask ourselves, ‘How are we taking care of the beautiful gift of life that God gave us?’” he said. “God challenges us through his word to look into our hearts, see how it has touched our lives and then spread his light into the world so that we can touch others.”
Following Mass and before the march, the bishop spoke at a rally. Lt. Governor Mark Robinson, former U.S. Congressman Mark Walker, and Tonya Baker Nelson, the founder of Hand of Hope Pregnancy Center in Fuquay-Varina, also spoke. Each highlighted the importance of preserving life at all stages from birth until natural death.
"Abortions happen when people don't see hope in their lives,” Bishop Luis said. “How can we change that? Who can change that? We can, but only by living out the Gospel message in our lives, sharing our witness to life, and expressing our love for our neighbors."