In the coming months, the Office of Pro-Life Activities will be organizing two events to honor those who participate in and aid the pro-life cause in the Diocese of Buffalo, as well as provide resources and financial means for the office to continue its mission of supporting pregnant mothers and their children in need.
On Saturday, Jan. 21, at 4:30 p.m., a Mass marking the observance of the 44th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion will take place on at St. Christopher Parish at 2660 Niagara Falls Blvd. in Tonawanda. The main celebrant will be Bishop Richard J. Malone.
During the Mass, the diocesan Office of Pro-Life Activities will present the annual Pro-Vita Awards. These awards will recognize those who have labored tirelessly for the pro-life cause and give them strength, encouragement and support. This year's recipients include:
• Youth: Maria Suchyna of Nativity of Blessed Virgin Mary, Williamsville
• Organization: Canisius High School Pro-Life
• Lay: Cheryl Zielen-Ersing from the St. Gianna Pregnancy Outreach, Buffalo
• Religious: Father Jeffrey Nowak, parochial vicar of St. Vincent de Paul Parish, Niagara Falls
• Professional: Dr. Gloria Roetzer from the Catholic Medical Association of Buffalo.
On Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 6 p.m., the sixth-annual St. Gianna Molla Pregnancy Outreach Center benefit banquet will be held at the Millennium Hotel at 2040 Walden Ave. in Cheektowaga. Bishop Malone will make opening remarks, and the keynote speaker will be Father Thomas Rosica, CSB, an outspoken defender of the right to life, chief executive officer of the Salt + Light Media Foundation in Toronto, Canada, since 2003, and a close personal friend of the Molla family
The event will also include live music by David Calire, a gift basket raffle and cash bar, and an opportunity to learn more about the center, its clients and its referring agencies. Tickets are non-refundable and cost $60 per person and $50 for students. Advance seating is necessary, with deadline of Jan. 31. RSVP to reserve a table for 10 or individual seats. If you cannot attend, consider making a donation.
In addition, Catholics are encouraged to participate in a solemn observance of the Roe v. Wade anniversary by placing a candle (electric, battery-operated or wax) in the front window of their homes at sundown on the evening of Jan. 22. The candle serves as a reminder of 50 million abortions since the 1973 Supreme Court decision.
Finally, the annual March for Life will take place in Washington, D.C., on Friday, Jan. 27. Buses will depart early Thursday, Jan. 26, from several locations.
For more information on any of these events, call the Office of Pro-Life Activities at 716-847-2205, or visit www.buffalodiocese.org/prolife.