Read below the integral version of the speech prepared to be delivered at the March for Life 2017 in Bucharest, capital city of Romania, by Alexandra Nadane, President of the association Studenţi pentru Viaţă (“Students for Life”). Due to restrictions of time, the speech was delivered in a shorter version at the event (see VIDEO below).
Dear participants to the March for Life,
I am glad we are together and thank you for being here.
I thank you not only on behalf of the organizers, but especially on behalf of those we support: women and children.
We have gathered in over 285 cities across Romania and the Republic of Moldova. We have gathered for women who are at the most difficult time of their lives, the women who go through pregnancy crisis. We have gathered for children whose life hangs on thread.
It is sad that some are not happy with the idea that the woman and child receive support. That is why I shall say again and again what I have been saying for years. Maybe now we shall be heard by those who accuse us of being something else than we really are.
The Pro-Life Month and the March for Life are apolitical and non-confessional, but they encourage participation of all religious denominations and political organizations. We do not demand a legal ban on abortion. We do not support any form of violence against women. We raise awareness on the reality of pregnancy crisis. We educate about the scientific truth that life begins at conception. We encourage a supportive attitude towards women so they can give birth to the life they are carrying in their wombs.
We are many, we are hundreds of thousands of Romanians who participate in pro-life activities at this time of the year.
Yet, it is not the number that is important. It is truth that is of the utmost importance.
Why is truth so important?
Truth only can give us the strength to keep on walking, truth only is constructive and the only foundation on which one can build. In time, truth proves stronger than lie.
No matter how much the full humanity of the unborn children is denied through lying, more and more people shall understand that we are people from the moment of conception.
No matter how much the reality of pregnancy crisis is denied through lying, more and more people shall understand the worry and vulnerability of a woman in pregnancy crisis.
Science shows that life begins at conception.
Morality teaches that life is the first human right.
Nevertheless, there is always something even more convincing than science and stronger than morality which can undeniably testify about pregnancy crisis and the humanity of unborn children.
And this is the woman who has been through a pregnancy crisis and or the survivor, the child who has survived a pregnancy crisis.
Women who have been through a pregnancy crisis ending either by birth or abortion shall speak.
More and more of them will gather their courage to speak.
This year, for the first time in Bucharest, we shall hear two testimonies. These two women shall give courage to other women.
More and more of those who have been close to being aborted shall speak.
When we fully realize that our brothers and sisters, our husbands or wives, that so many people without whom we could not imagine our life have been so close to being aborted, we shall be able to understand more clearly what we lose to abortion and how much we have to gain if you let our children live.
Many of us, of those who participate today to the March for Life are in fact survivors.
In Cluj-Napoca city a short video was made. It features different persons in the street who are shown the statistics of live births versus abortions in the year of their birth. Their smile fades away just as they are looking at the numbers. Because they can see they are all survivors.
The number of Romanians who have never been born is now greater than the actual population of Romania. This means that many of us have brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts who lived less than three months [transl. note – the legal abortion limit in Romania is at the 14th pregnancy week].
Such loss is everywhere around the world, while Romania and the Republic Moldova are among the countries with the largest number of abortions in the world.
According to a report from January 2017, in the latest 100 years the world has numbered 1 billion abortions.
When we hear “one billion”, we feel like taking a step back.
We feel like wondering: is there any point in joining marches, in reading books with our children, in making chalk drawings together with them, in organizing conferences, in watching pro-life movies?
Facing a mountain, a human being may look dwarfed. But people have climbed the loftiest peaks in the world!
Facing an ocean, a human being may look powerless. But people have crossed all the oceans on Earth!
Facing the starry sky and what is beyond the Sun, a human being may look less valuable. But human mind has reached beyond the stars, while human soul can recognize their Creator, the One Who made the sky and the whole universe!
Facing the unjust death of millions of people, a human being may indeed look powerless.
But truth is on our side and it gives us strength!
And the truth is that everybody can help a woman in pregnancy crisis. This is the truth!
Experience has proved that support from the baby’s father, from a friend, from a psychologist, from a clergyman can make the difference between abortion and giving birth to that baby.
Regardless whether we are men or women, regardless our age, our knowledge or financial possibilities, we can all help a woman in pregnancy crisis.
To do that, all we need is to care about her.
All we need to do is not turn our back to her with indifference, but stretch a helping hand saying: “I shall help you with all my power to get through what you think is impossible for you to get through alone!”
And she will find the strength to get through her pregnancy crisis not because we are strong, but because we shall remain by her.
A man who says to the mother of his baby: “We shall keep the baby no matter what!” shall give her strength.
A father who says to his daughter: “I stand by you. Daddy loves you! It will be all right. I shall take care of my grandson” shall give her strength.
A mother who says: “I am here. I shall help you raise this baby. Have faith, I have raised you as well!” shall give her strength.
A friend who says: “I stand by your side”, a social worker, a psychologist, a clergyman who say: “I stand by you” shall give her strength.
A little child who tells Mom: “I want to play with my little sister you have in your tummy” shall give her strength.
Thus, our call to action “Help the mother and child! They depend on you” is addressed to all of us, to each and every one of us.
Time has come to realize that, while we live in a democracy, this country is our country and we believe its laws and institutions are meant to help us live harmoniously and develop.
What stops us, as a society, from creating the tools to help women in pregnancy crisis?
As we have done every year, this year we propose such tools again.
First of all, we need support centers for pregnant women. Centers where a woman in pregnancy crisis can benefit from free psychological counseling and support from a specialized social worker.
In the United States of America there are 2,800 such centers. They were not established by the state, but by non-governmental organizations! Each such center has been established by a well-balanced citizen who could not bear to see anymore the dramas that women in pregnancy crisis go through.
Another way to support the woman in pregnancy crisis is granting her a pregnancy allowance for her special needs at this time.
These are our proposals which we do not wish to impose.
But we shall offer support to the pregnant woman only if we value the pregnant woman and her child. This is true both on individual level and as a society.
Before ending my speech, I would like to mention the other rally which takes place today in Rome and in other European cities: the March for Europe.
In the mission statement of the March for Europe there is the following affirmation: “European states will have no future if they remain divided and compete with each other instead of standing united”.
This “united” has a thoroughly factual meaning: it means people standing by other people.
For Europe is not first and foremost a territory, a patrimony, or a dream. Foremostly, Europe means the people of Europe.
Then we can read in a different key the affirmation: „The people of Europe will have no future if they remain divided and compete with each other instead of standing united”.
And the greatest division among Europeans all across the continent is not economic division, not cultural, ethnic or religious division. Indeed it is not what differentiates among any two Europeans.
The greatest division is between born Europeans and Europeans who are yet unborn.
If these two types of Europeans stand united, Europe will live.
We need to understand that Europe will live only if the Europe inside pregnant women’s wombs lives.
The future of Europe is the very present of “the least” [transl. note – Matthew, 25, 45] of us who only measure a few millimeters or centimeters!
Under these circumstances, we consider that a vital country project for the Romanians on both sides of the Prut River is the accountability of the whole society towards the gift of life, towards those who can be its future.
The future of Romanians, the future of Europe requires real support for women in pregnancy crisis.