13 May 2015, The Tablet

Francis, Burke and Pell all back Italy’s March for Life

During his Regina Coeli address last Sunday, Pope Francis gave his support to participants in Italy’s fifth annual March for Life.

“I greet all those participating in the initiative for life taking place this morning in Rome,” the Pope said. “It is important to work together to defend and promote life.”

Several thousand people from all parts of Italy and from around the world took part in the march through the heart of Rome’s historic centre. Among those taking part was Cardinal Raymond Burke, the Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta. Speaking with Vatican Radio, Cardinal Burke said, “St John Paul II urged us, in his wonderful encyclical letter on the Gospel of Life, to make public manifestations to demonstrate the incomparable beauty, the inviolability of innocent, defenceless human life.”

“It’s wonderful to see the international participation” in the march, he continued. “So many come from various countries because they want to join the Italian people in their testimony to the dignity of human life, created in God’s own image and redeemed by our Lord Jesus Christ.” Cardinal George Pell, the Prefect of the Vatican’s Secretariat of the Economy, gave the keynote address at a pro-family conference on the eve of the march organised by the Voice of the Family coalition.

Asked about how the Church can respond to the challenges to the family, said, “The secrets for religious prosperity, lie in the Gospels and in the Catholic tradition. We’ve just got to go to them … And adapting more and more to the society – people will all say that’s good, but they won’t join, and it will put us out of business if we do it long enough.” “There are many, many different types of Catholics,” he said. “There’s the Pope and bishops and priests. But I think especially in family life, it’s an area for the witness of married, the witness of spouses, of parents, and of their children.”

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