In response to recent rulings by the nation’s Supreme Court decriminalizing abortion, the bishops of Mexico have called on the faithful and people of good will throughout the country to join a march "for women and for life" to be held Oct. 3 in Mexico City.
In a Sept. 13 statement, the Mexican bishops’ conference encouraged the faithful to invite people to the march "at Sunday Masses and by other means deemed appropriate," so that “as many people as possible" attend.
On Sept. 7, the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation invalidated several articles that protected life from conception in the penal code of the state of Coahuila. Two days later, the court ruled parts of the Sinaloa state constitution protecting life from conception to be unconstitutional. The rulings are expected to have wide-ranging effects throughout Mexico.
“We have shared how deplorable this situation is and we have already spoken out about it,” the bishops said, adding they must now be open to putting their words into actions.
The Mexican bishops said they were "pleased to see the numerous actions and demonstrations that have taken place throughout the country, and we encourage the laity to continue doing so."
“Various lay people from different social organizations, Catholic and non-Catholic, have approached us to propose a massive presence in Mexico City in order to express appreciation for women and the protection of the human life of the woman and her child in all circumstances,” they explained.
The demonstration “for women and life” will “bring together social organizations from all over the country," they said.
"The proposal has been presented to the Mexican Bishops’ Conference and we welcome this great opportunity for our faithful people to join this initiative," the bishops explained.
Marcial Padilla, director of the Mexican pro-life platform ConParticipación, is in charge of coordinating the march.
Speaking with ACI Prensa, CNA’s sister news agency, Padilla noted that "September, which should be a month of celebration for Mexicans" because of the celebration of the country’s independence on Sept. 16, "has become a sad and sombre month."
This situation is due to "the ruling by the Supreme Court of Justice, which declared it should be legal to take the life of a child in the womb of his mother at some stage in the pregnancy,” which will terminate the lives of “a great many Mexicans."
Padilla pointed out that "we know that abortion is a complex issue that cannot be solved without addressing it from every angle."
“If we want to embrace with mercy the woman who gets an abortion, prison is probably not the way to help,” he continued.
“On the contrary, what we want to do is to solve the problems that led her to consider it, but in no way do we want to take away the protection under the law from the unborn child. The child must have the same protection under the law as his mother.”
The coordinator of the march "for women and for life" stressed that "it’s necessary to act in support of both the mother and the child, for women and for life, which is why social organizations throughout the country decided to call a great march for women and for life.”
Padilla said, “we are going to gather as many people as possible in a national march in Mexico City, to express our commitment to the dignity of the person and women and the defense of life.”
The pro-life leader stressed, "we’re going to continue promoting actions by civil society to support the mother and the child to avoid this dilemma of the culture of death.”