Last week there was a rally of hundreds of Christians in Augusta, Georgia to protest in front of the murderous corporation Planned Parenthood in downtown. This for profit organization on Broad Street, just 8 blocks from my former rectory on Broad Street, slaughters hundreds of children yearly taken from mothers they have counseled. One wonders what body parts were traded?
But the amazing thing was that the secular newspaper in town, the Augusta Chronicle promoted it prior to it happening (the Christian rally at Planned Parenthood) and then covered it heavily and prominently in their paper! The Macon Telegraph owned and operated by a big corporation insensitive to the religious composition of Macon, would never have done this. They are owned or purchased by the McClatchy organization with its ideologies. It is a disaster for a local community to have its news and editorial policies distorted by a faraway media corporation with an agenda.
Even more astounding is that the Augusta Chronicle also helped to promote a "Walk for Jesus" in downtown Augusta yesterday (Saturday) and then place its coverage of it on the front page of the paper this morning, Sunday!
It was an ecumenical event, but something Catholics would appreciate, an outdoor procession! Here is the Augusta Chronicle's coverage of the story. Kudos to them (they are locally owned!)
Christians march in unity
Thousands bring prayer, praise downtownBy sean gruber Staff Writer
As soon as Wouter Ceyssens heard about the March for Jesus, he knew he wanted his whole family to participate.
Watching Saturday’s activities on Augusta Common, he said he was happy to be part of an event that “really united us Christians in Christ’s love.”
“You see all kinds of speakers from many different churches and denominations participating here today. That’s really something awesome to see,” said Ceyssens, a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church (Augusta). “You often hear about a big Catholic conference or a Protestant gathering, but very rarely do you see an event that brings all of us together like this. I’m glad to be in an event that’s not just telling others what we are against, but also what we support.”
Ceyssens was one of thousands of people carrying crosses, singing hymns and waving flags as they marched down Broad Street. Many said they hoped to draw strength from a united display of faith.
“Many times, I feel like Christians think they have to hide in corners. But we need to gather together. It’s a great way to gain encouragement and strength in this hard life” – Lyle wolfgram, Hephzibah resident
There was no official number of those taking part, but the crowd filled Augusta Common and much of Broad Street, and one speaker said the 10,000 expected had shown up.
The event, organized by local Christian radio and television stations, was meant to be a “way to change this nation through prayer and praise,” and to acknowledge ongoing persecution of Christians in the Middle East.
“This is exciting, isn’t it? And it’s only the beginning for us. We plan to keep on going,” Watchmen Broadcasting CEO Dorothy Spaulding said to the crowd after the march. “This rally not only brings glory to God but is a first step in taking our city back … through prayer and praise it will happen.”
Local churches and Christian motorcycle clubs participated in the rally. Arthur Blessitt, who has carried the cross in every nation and is listed in Guinness World Records for the longest walk, took part in the march and gave a sermon afterward.
Participants sang and danced at Augusta Common throughout the morning.
Hephzibah resident Lyle Wolfgram, who works as a street preacher, said it felt “great to band together.”
“Many times, I feel like Christians think they have to hide in corners. But we need to gather together. It’s a great way to gain encouragement and strength in this hard life,” Wolfgram said. “It does do me some good to look around here and see that I’m not the only one in this boat … that there are more people who feel like I do.”
The event did draw at least two counter-demonstrators. One of them, Harlem resident Patrick Moorehead, said he had a “very positive experience” debating the marches.
“I’ve gotten about five hugs since I set up here this morning,” he said from the edge of the common. “I’m not out here to demonize. Many people here are very loving and don’t have bigoted beliefs. But I am hoping that maybe I can debate some people’s views on gay marriage or helping the poor and change some minds here. … I’d just like to see some Christians act more Christ-like.”
Watch a video and see a slideshow from Saturday’s March for Jesus at augustachronicle.com.