Lutherans mark 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade

Participate in ‘March for Life,’ hold advocacy-themed conference

ST. LOUIS—January 22, 2013—Lutherans are marking the milestone 40th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion by participating in the national “March for Life” and attending the first-ever Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod Life Conference Friday, Jan. 25, and Saturday, Jan. 26, respectively, in Washington, D.C.

The National “March for Life” takes place annually on the National Mall in Washington and protests the Supreme Court’s decision that legalized abortion in the United States. This year’s event is expected to draw more than 300,000 people.

“The right to life is at the foundation of human existence,” said LCMS President Matthew C. Harrison. “Life and death belong to God, not government. Christians must come together in defense of life, speaking out as our consciences and religious principles dictate. This is our duty before God and our right as citizens of this land.”

Events on the day of the march include a 9 a.m. EST LCMS Divine Service of worship at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City Hotel at Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Va. Harrison will deliver the sermon. The service is open to the public.

A pre-march rally begins at noon EST on the National Mall. The march is expected to conclude around 3 p.m. EST at the U.S. Supreme Court building.

The LCMS Life Conference is being held in conjunction with the March for Life. The conference title is “Lutherans and Pro-Life Advocacy — Good and Acceptable Service,” based on 1 Tim. 2:1-4. Conference sessions will be held at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City Hotel, Arlington, Va., Saturday, Jan. 26.

Open to the public, the LCMS Life Conference will equip individuals, groups and congregations to conduct pro-life advocacy at the local, state and national levels and to discuss theological motivation, encouragement and practical suggestions for becoming more active in the public arena.

“Given the milestone anniversary of the Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion, it is particularly appropriate this year that pro-life Lutherans gather together to give witness to the tragedy we see around us caused by the disrespect for human life,” said Maggie Karner, director, LCMS Life Ministries and conference organizer. “This conference is the perfect way to educate ourselves on the issues and prepare to boldly witness for life to the world in new and effective ways.”

Conference speakers will include Harrison; Dr. Robert Benne, author of Good and Bad Ways to Speak about Religion and Politics; Steve Macias, West Coast regional coordinator for Students for Life; Mollie Hemingway, Lutheran journalist and blogger; Scott Klusendorf, director of the Life Training Institute; Tim Goeglein, vice president of external relations for Focus on the Family; Carol Tobias, executive director of National Right to Life; and other Lutherans involved in pro-life advocacy. A youth track with special breakout sessions for high-school and college students also will be offered.

The LCMS will provide same day, online Lutheran coverage of the March for Life and LCMS Life Conference. The online newsroom will include:

  • Photos and videos spotlighting Lutheran participants.
  • A link to follow Twitter posts by LCMS Special Projects Coordinator for Life Ministries Ed Szeto (@edszeto4life) and the LCMS (@thelcms). To follow LCMS coverage of both events on Twitter, search #LCMSMFL or #LCMSLifeconf.

Find the LCMS online newsroom for the “March for Life” and the LCMS Life Conference at

About The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod

The 2.3 million-member Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is a mission-oriented, Bible-based, confessional Christian denomination headquartered in St. Louis. Through acts of witness and mercy, the church carries out its mission worldwide to make known the love of Jesus Christ. Learn more at


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