Tomorrow, Saturday, 2nd July, the 10th Annual All-Ireland Rally for Life will kick off at 2.00pm at Custom House Square, Belfast.
The All-Ireland Rally for Life is the biggest event in the pro-life calendar in Ireland. Thousands will come from far and wide to walk in solidarity along the streets of Belfast City Centre sending out a clear message to our politicians and the media that the people of Ireland, both north and south, oppose any proposals to introduce abortion and demand protection of unborn children with disabilities.
“There is mounting pressure on Stormont and the Dáil to legalise abortion of unborn babies with disabilities,” said Bernadette Smyth, the director of Precious Life, the leading pro-life group in Northern Ireland. “Those pushing to legalise abortion in Ireland try to deny that an unborn child is a ‘person’. This year’s Rally theme is ‘personhood begins at conception’ and every person, with or without a disability, has value and deserves to be protected. Our pro-life laws, both north and south, recognise the personhood of the unborn child and the people of Ireland don’t want that to change.”
Among the speakers planned for the Rally is Fionnuala McArdle whose baby girl, Meabh, was born at just 23 weeks’ gestation, which is within the legal limit for an abortion in Britain under the Abortion Act 1967. Doctors gave her baby girl a 1 per cent chance of survival. She weighed just 1lb when she was born and is now thriving at nearly nine months’ old.
Another guest speaker is Carla, who has a condition called cerebral palsy. Doctors painted a very hopeless picture of what Carla’s life would be like because of her disability, but Carla has proved them wrong. She defied their bleak expectations and will be commencing her studies at Queen’s University, Belfast this September.
Last week, members of Precious Life were at the Royal Courts of Justice in Belfast to listen to the Attorney General for Northern Ireland present his submissions before a panel of three senior judges in his appeal against last December’s landmark High Court abortion ruling. The Attorney General declared that abortion on grounds of the unborn child’s disability is “fundamentally founded on discrimination” by pitting little disabled babies “against their non-disabled brothers and sisters”.
“The people of Northern Ireland applaud Mr John Larkin, the Attorney General for Northern Ireland, for being such a bold and courageous defender of the right to life of babies with disabilities in his appeal against last December’s Belfast High Court abortion ruling.
“Our politicians in both Stormont and the Dáil have a duty to listen to the views of the people. The people of Ireland, both north and south, will be sending out a loud and clear message to their political representatives this Saturday at the All-Ireland Rally for Life – ‘Abortion will never be in our name,’” Bernadette Smyth concluded.
Picture: The Munster Rally for Life, which took place in Cork on 27th February.