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Catholics, evangelicals and members of other faiths attended the march. “Christians should stand up for those who are weakest and have no voice”. Police had to protect the event from a violent counter-demonstration.
On September 21, more than 8,000 people took part in the the “March for Life” in at the German Reichstag in Berlin, according the Federal Association of Life Law, the organiser of the event in Germany.
After the march, there was an worship service, where the Catholic bishop of Passau, Stefan Oster said that the 100,000 unborn children aborted every year are a “monstrous scandal”.
ABORTION AND DISABILITIES
According to Oster, nearly 300 unborn children are killed each day. This corresponds to about ten school classes. Worldwide, over 50 million unborn children are aborted every year. Abortions would kill more people than wars, epidemics and natural disasters.
He pointed out that unborn children with disabilities are the “most deadly threatened group”. About 90% of children diagnosed with Down syndrome are aborted.
Oster appealed to women who are unintentionally pregnant or in mental or material need, to turn to the church. Be prepared to help and support. “Come to us!”, he said.
The Catholic auxiliary bishop Florian Wörner (Augsburg) also spoke in the service, stating that “man is not a product of chance, but is indebted to the will and love of the Creator. [...] Christians should stand up for those who are weakest and have no voice”.
EVANGELICAL AND CATHOLIC LEADERS
Pope Francis, as well as other Catholic leaders, sent a greeting to the participants.
The German Evangelical Alliance was represented by its chairman, Pastor Ekkehart Vetter. The bishop of the Independent Evangelical Lutheran Church (SELK), Hans-Jörg Voigt, also attended.
Meanwhile, the Secretary General of the Federation of Evangelical Free Churches (Baptist and Brethren), and the President of the Confederation of Free Evangelical Churches, sent their greetings.
THE EKD DID NOT ATTEND THE MARCH
The Protestant Evangelical Church in Germany (Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland, EKD) did not participate in the march, nor sent a greeting at the demonstration.
A spokeswoman of the EKD explained that it is committed to protect life in a variety of ways, and it gives particular to the ecumenical Week of Life. However, the EKD "does not agree with all the statements of the organizers of the march”, she said.
Nonetheless, senior church leaders from EKD member churches, wrote and sent greetings to the participants.
A VIOLENT COUNTER-DEMONSTRATION
The rally was stormed by counter-demonstrators and cleared by the police on several ocassions. The demonstration was also temporarily interrupted by a sitting blockade.
The counter-demonstration was organised by the “Alliance for sexual self-determination”, which is supported by, among others, the parties Alliance 90 / The Greens and the Left.
The Alliance demands that paragraphs 218 and 219 of the Criminal Code be deleted, thereby creating a right to abortion.