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CURRENT ISSUE:  January 10, 2011
VOL. 49, NO. 1   •   Oakland, CA
Other front page stories
Bishop Cordileone’s report for the New Year: A time for reflection on accomplishments, challenges
Youth rally ignites ‘Fire Within’
Bishop leads national committee on marriage
30,000 expected at Walk for Life

Annual event affirms sanctity of all life

Events on both sides of the Bay next week will highlight an unwavering commitment to the unborn.
More than 30,000 people are expected to participate in the seventh annual Walk for Life West Coast in San Francisco on Jan. 22. Parishes from around the Oakland diocese have chartered buses or arranged to meet at the beginning of the route.

Walk for Life events
Fourth Annual Standing Up For Life Walk in Oakland
Noon to 2 p.m. Jan. 21
Oakland City Hall, One Frank H. Ogawa Plaza

Leadership4Life Conference

“The Impact of Abortion in America”
2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Jan. 21
Chosen Vessels Christian Church, 710 Haight Ave., Alameda

Third Annual East Bay
Memorial Prayer Service

7 to 9 p.m. Jan. 21
Shiloh Church, 3295 School St., Oakland

Mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral

8 a.m. Jan. 22
St. Mary’s Cathedral, 1111 Gough St., San Francisco

West Coast Walk for Life

11 a.m. Jan. 22
Justin Herman Plaza, 1 Market St., San Francisco

Youth Rally

3 to 5 p.m. Jan. 22
Fort Mason Center, Festival Pavilion (at the end of the walk)

Sunday Vigil Mass

5 p.m. Jan. 22
Shrine of St. Francis, 610 Vallejo St., San Francisco
The walk takes place on the 37th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in the United States.

Across the Bay, longtime East Bay pro-life activist Walter Hoye will host his fourth annual Standing Up 4Life walk at noon Jan. 21 at Oakland City Hall.

Attendance at last year’s noontime walk was hampered by storms, Hoye said, but his enthusiasm was undampened.

“We are awfully excited to take a walk in Oakland,” said Hoye, whose criminal conviction for violating Oakland’s law restricting sidewalk counseling was overturned in October. He is awaiting word from the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on his challenge to the law.

Hoye’s group, Issues4Life, states its purpose for the Friday events: “We walk because all children deserve birth. We walk because abortion in the Black community is a form of genocide, it is the Darfur of America.”

“Oakland is the way of reaching the minority community,” he said, noting that some speakers will also be on the dais the next day at the Walk for Life in San Francisco.

“I encourage everyone to walk to with us,” Hoye said, adding, “The walk is short.” Participants may register at the organization’s website, www.issues4life.org.

The organization’s events also include a symposium in Alameda in the afternoon. Bishop Salvatore J. Cordileone will join other Bay Area leaders in an interfaith prayer service at Shiloh Church at 7 p.m.

While some participants had become accustomed to Eucharist Adoration at the Cathedral of Christ the Light the night before the walk, this year the Confraternity of Eucharistic Devotion, Diocese of Oakland (CEDDO) is asking its members to devote a Holy Hour in their local parishes on Jan. 21 in support of the Walk for Life.

In extending this invitation to all the faithful of the diocese to share in this installment of CEDDO’s “Adoration on the Eves,” CEDDO said in a statement, “We affirm the sanctity of all human life and believe that it should be protected and defended from conception to natural death.”

Bishop Cordileone is among the eight Roman Catholic bishops expected to participate in activities surrounding the Walk for Life West Coast, which is scheduled to begin after an 11 a.m. rally at Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco.

An addition to the event this year is a 3 p.m. Youth Rally at Fort Mason Center, at the end of the walk, will feature speakers, music and vendors.

Among the walkers this year will be a strong contingent from the Diocese of Oakland, some of whom have been walking the walk since its beginning. Six years ago, Jack and Mary Sullivan of Alameda participated in the first Walk for Life West Coast with their three sons. This month, the Sullivans — with five sons, ranging in age from 2 to 12 — will again make the 2.5-mile journey.

“It’s a great day for the family,” says Jack Sullivan of Alameda. “It’s a prayerful rally. It’s a great day for life.”

In the first year, opposition was more noticeable, but he noted that while the walk has grown from 4,000 participants to 30,000, the protesters continue to number about 700 to 800.

And a seasoned walker like Jack Sullivan says: “Park the car at the end of the walk, because kids might have a tougher time making the 2.5-mile trek back to the car.”

Cathy Tomutsa and her husband have been walkers from the beginning. “Starting in 2009,” she said. “I connected with others from St. Joseph in Pinole, which is my church.

“Last year St. Catherine’s (Martinez) shared a bus with us,” she said. “Our Respect Life group has grown and is more active every year. We are trying to fill a bus this year with 58 people.”

What brings her back? “I have to stand up for life,” she said.

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