SA and world youth take stand in pro-life events on International Life Chain Sunday

Pro-life protesters picketed in East London on Saturday, October 4.
Pro-life protesters picketed in East London on Saturday, October 4.

Up to a million Christians in approximately 1 800 locations worldwide took part in the various Life Chains on October 5, International Life Chain Sunday. A National March for Life, organised by the National Alliance for Life, took place in Umhlanga, Durban, with about 2 000 marching, reports the Christian Action Network (CAN) in a media release.

About 150 Christians formed a Life Chain to proclaim the sanctity of life in Cape Town on October 5. The Life Chain in Cape Town on the centre island of Buitengracht Street (near the entrance to the Waterfront). Life Chains also took place in East London and Bloemfontein on Satruday, October 4.

The Life Chain is an international prayer rally and peaceful placard protest against the abortion holocaust, says CAN, which reports the following statistics:  

  •    90 000 abortions were performed at SA state hospitals in 2013, up by 20 000 from 2012 (“Teenage Abortion Numbers Shoot Up”, The Times, 6 August 2014).
  •   Most of them, 54 000 or 60% were teenagers (“Teenage Abortion Numbers Shoot Up”, The Times, 6 August 2014).
  •   Of the 37 000 abortions at Marie Stopes clinics in South Africa in 2013, 8% of them were performed on teenagers. (Marie Stopes Communications Manager, Andrea Thompson, quoted in “Teenage Abortion Numbers Shoot Up”, The Times, 6 August 2014).
  •   Combining the statistics given for state hospitals and Marie Stopes clinics, means that there were approximately 127 000 abortions in 2013.

Despite the fact that many teenagers are falling pregnant and aborting their babies, at the both the March for Life in Durban and at the Life Chains, hundreds of children and teenagers proclaimed that they will stand for Life in their generation. These are the children that survived the Termination of Pregnancy Act (1997).

“Pro-life groups come alongside the next generation to help and support them, recognising that the future of this country is in their hands. Pro-lifers promote abstinence from sex until marriage and support those facing an unplanned pregnancy with practical help and support,” says Taryn Hodgson, International Co-ordinator of the CAN.

Illegal abortionists operate with impunity in virtually every city and town in South Africa – due to the failure of police and city officials to investigate or make any arrests. The Department of Health estimated that there are 38 illegal abortions per 1 000 women (report in Sowetan Live, 12 June 2012). 

The Christian Action Network has urged pro-lifers to lay charges against illegal abortionists at their local police station. A form detailing how illegal abortions violate both the Termination of Pregnancy Act and Medicines Act has been drafted for this purpose and can be downloaded here.

“Pro-life groups uphold the sanctity of life – that every life is valuable to God. Over 70 Crisis Pregnancy Centres, Mothers Homes and Baby Homes across South Africa provide women with loving alternatives and practical support, not just one choice – abortion – that pro-abortionists coerce women into choosing. Doctors for Life and many other Christian groups each care for hundreds of orphans.” says Hodgson.

Since 1987 Life Chains have been held in the USA, and since 1992 Africa Christian Action has organised Life Chains in South Africa. This was the 22nd Life Chain held in Cape Town. 

Gifts, such as baby items, in support of Kwasizabantu Mission were collected at the Cape Town Life Chain.

Reporting on the East London Life Chain, Judy van Aardt says: “Despite a disappointing turn out a handful of us, representing two churches, held a picket on International Life Chain Sunday to commemorate the babies who lost their lives to abortion. Due to a common preference we met on Saturday 4  October. Sadly, we get little support from the church who seem to think that our actions are pointless, but if we save just one life it is a huge victory for Christ, who calls us not simply to be hearers of the word, but also doers. The apathy of the church has allowed so many negative bills to be passed since 1994, beginning with Abortion On Demand in 1997, signed in by our first democratic president, Nelson Mandela. The answer to those who respond, ‘But it’s legal,’ is ‘So was apartheid, but it didn’t make it right.’ Let us stand for righteousness while we still can.”

In Cape Town a 40 Days for Life prayer vigil outside Marie Stopes clinic in the city centre began on September 24 and will continue until Sunday, November 2. Anybody wishing to participate can contact Contact Colette Thomas at colettethomas.hli@gmail.com or 083 412 4936.

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