Every year, hundreds of thousands of people travel to Washington, DC, for the March for Life. Ever since the first anniversary handing down of the Roe and Doe decisions from the Supreme Court, pro-lifers have gathered to protest the legalized killing of the unborn and pray for an end to it. Nellie Gray began the March for Life, and the woman was a force to be reckoned with. For 40 years, the March had the same basic structure and theme: a rally that included hearing from pro-life congressman and senators, priests and ministers, and other pro-life groups, followed by a march from the Mall to the Supreme Court. At the end of the route, at least in all the years I’ve been going, Silent No More has been there, with women telling their stories of regretted abortions on the steps of the Supreme Court. After Nellie Gray passed away, not long before the 2013 March for Life, Jeanne Monahan was chosen as her successor. Between then and now, Jeanne has worked to revamp March for Life to meet the challenges of reaching out to people in a social-media-driven world. The webpage got a huge facelift last year, adding a blog that gets updated on a regular basis, links to news about the March and other pro-life issues, resources related to the March and all the surrounding activities, and more. They launched an active Twitter account, Instagram account, Facebook page… And then, just before the March itself in January, there came an app. With a new logo that’s a stylized rose with a mother and child hidden within, March for Life took a huge leap into our tech-connected world. The app contained information relating to the March itself – all the information you’d find on the website: route, event details, travel info, related events – as well as links to news, video, and education on pro-life issues. This year, March for Life took criticisms that abortion rights activists claim (“You don’t care about the baby once it’s born!”) and met it head on: the underlying theme of this year’s March was adoption and the joy it brings. And so, among the issues you can read about within the education section of the app is adoption. Also on this page are “Life Principles”, “Pro Life 101”, “The Pro-Life Movement”, and “History of the March.” Finally, within the app there is a page to take action. Here, you can look up your congressman, find a local crisis pregnancy center, and learn about lobbying as a citizen, as well as make a donation to the March for Life Education & Defense Fund. This year, our family was unable to get to the March for Life. While this was a huge disappointment, we were excited to try out the app during the rally. There was a live, 360º camera (courtesy of EWTN) that documented the entire rally. (I admit that we did not try to watch the whole March, since we were doing our schoolwork that afternoon.) During the rally, I could move the camera view around by swiping on my screen so that I could look at the speaker or the crowd. While the entire rally video isn’t available any more, what is available is a short video with clips from the rally and the March itself, complete with the 360º view. Hopefully, as time goes on, more videos will be added to this page. Even though the actual March for Life happens only once a year, this app is useful year-round, with up to date articles and blog posts on issues that concern us as pro-lifers and Catholics. It’s free in the App Store, as well as Google Play. On Apple, it’s compatible with devices running iOS 6.0 or later. It’s optimized for the iPhone 5, but, as you can see from my screen shots, looks GREAT on the iPad, too.
Copyright 2014, Christine Johnson