Orthodox Christians March for Life

by 1389 on January 27, 2012

in 1389 (blog admin), abortion/pro-life, Orthodox Christianity, Pennsylvania

Orthodox Christians take high-visibility role in the March for Life

WASHINGTON, D.C., January 25, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) – At a religious event often dominated by massive presence of Roman Catholics, members of the Eastern Orthodox Church played a more visible role in this year’s March for Life than ever before. For the first time, the opening prayer in front of the Supreme Court was offered by His Eminence Jonah (Paffhausen), Metropolitan of All America and Canada for the Orthodox Church in America (OCA), as well as Roman Catholic prelates Daniel Cardinal DiNardo and Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan.

“We are of one heart and one purpose,” he said as he chanted a litany of life before hundreds of thousands of marchers.

Metropolitan Jonah at 2012 March for Life
Metropolitan Jonah, primate of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA),
participates in Monday’s March for Life in Washington D.C.

 
The Metropolitan was joined by several of his brother bishops, including Bp. Melchizedek of Pittsburgh, Bp. Matthias of Chicago, and Bp. Michael of New York. At least 15 priests were in his company alone. Several individual representatives of the Carpatho-Russian Orthodox, Greek Orthodox, and Antiochian Orthodox Churches also participated.

Fr. Chad Hatfield, chancellor of St. Vladimir Orthodox Theological Seminary in Syosset, New York, estimated more than 100 Orthodox Christians came with his group. St. Tikhon’s Seminary in Pennsylvania also brought students to participate in the church’s public ministry.

“The nation should respect life from conception until the moment the person naturally takes his last breath,” Met. Jonah told LifeSiteNews.com. The Orthodox Christian Church, the world’s second largest Christian denomination, dogmatically teaches that life begins at conception and that abortion is a grave sin.

He said throughout the year the faithful should remind women who have had an abortion “that forgiveness and healing are available to them. They should support ministries that care for pregnant women by, for instance, founding crisis pregnancy centers. That is the kind of ministry that will bring an end to abortion in this nation,” he said.

He instructed parishes of the OCA to insert prayers for the end of abortion into one of the church’s litanies on January 22, which the OCA proclaimed “Sanctity of Human Life Sunday.”
[…]
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