Days of Remembrance for Aborted Children

Days of Remembrance for Aborted Children

[I post this separately as a comment to phaley’s post MEMORIAL DAY??? (especially his question “What sort of Memorial do they [aborted children] deserve?” and answer “It would seem that a Good God would demand even more from us than a day in their honor – like maybe a day of Penance and Remorse for misusing the Gift of Life which He has bestowed on us”), because it would be too complicated/difficult for me to post its content in a simple comment. – AQ Tom]

There are two days of remembrance for aborted children.  Both have informational websites: one from the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (whose monogram I and others have distorted many times for good and sometimes no-so-good reasons).  The first day is better known, because its date is the same as that of the Supreme Court’s decision nationally legalizing abortion.  The other is lesser known, and its observance is quietly and slowly spreading (perhaps too quietly and slowly and thus should be encouraged by the Bishops’ Conference so as not deserve the monogram that I and others have given it).

January 22 Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children

A great prayer for life is urgently needed, a prayer which will rise up throughout the world. Through special initiatives and in daily prayer, may an impassioned plea rise to God, the Creator and lover of life, from every Christian community, from every group and association, from every family and from the heart of every believer. – Pope Saint John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae, no. 100* 


The over 56 million abortions since the 1973 decisions of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Boltonreflect with heartbreaking magnitude what Pope Francis means by a “throwaway culture.” However, we have great trust in God’s providence. We are reminded time and again in Scripture to seek the Lord’s help, and as people of faith, we believe that our prayers are heard.

The General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), no. 373, designates January 22 as a particular day of prayer and penance, called the “Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children”: “In all the Dioceses of the United States of America, January 22 (or January 23, when January 22 falls on a Sunday) shall be observed as a particular day of prayer for the full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life and of penance for violations to the dignity of the human person committed through acts of abortion.”

As individuals, we are called to observe this day through the penitential practices of prayer, fasting and/or giving alms. Another way to take part is through participating in special events to observe the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Call your local diocese or parish to find out what events might be taking place in your area.

National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children

Prayers at abortion victims gravesiteLeadership Resources Here >>

On Saturday, September 8, 2018, Citizens for a Pro-Life SocietyPriests for Life and the Pro-Life Action League will co-sponsor the 6th annual National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children, calling on pro-life Americans to honor the gravesites of our aborted brothers and sisters.

Solemn prayer vigils will be conducted at these gravesites, of which there are 51 across the United States, as well as at dozens of other sites dedicated in memory of aborted children.

Day of Rememberance 2017

The 5th annual National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children was held on September 9, 2017 at 183 locations throughout the United States, with over 5,000 in attendance. Because of Hurricane Irma, some services had to be canceled or postponed.

Why Visit the Gravesites of the Aborted Unborn?

When people become truly aware of the reality of abortion, they can more easily cut through the lies by which some try to justify it, and the natural apathy to which human nature is inclined. Even pro-life people are thrust into a higher level of commitment and activism.

Touching this reality happens in various ways: hearing a vivid description of the procedure, seeing diagrams of it or images of aborted children, hearing a woman’s personal testimony of regret over her abortion.

This impact, whereby abortion no longer remains an abstraction, can be brought to an even more profound level when experienced during an event, such as the funeral for an aborted baby.

Tens of thousands of these children have been retrieved and buried at gravesites across our country. The stories of how they were killed, how they were found, and how they were buried, along with the pictures and videos that document those events, are powerful tools to awaken the consciences of our fellow citizens.

But while a funeral and burial for an aborted baby may be a relatively rare event, the opportunity to visit the burial places and recall how those children got there does not have to be rare—in fact, it shouldn’t be.

Pro-lifers should be visiting these gravesites—and other memorial sites dedicated to aborted babies—as a regular part of their pro-life witness. That’s what the National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children is all about.

An Annual Event—and More

The first National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children was held in September 2013 on the 25th anniversay of the solemn burial of the earthly remains of some 1,500 abortion victims in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Over 100 memorial services were held across the United States, and it was clear this should become an annual event.

The Day of Remembrance will be held annually on the second Saturday in September. Dates for upcoming Days of Remembrance are as follows:

  • September 8, 2018
  • September 14, 2019
  • September 12, 2020
  • September 18, 2021
  • September 10, 2022

Pictures and videos from past Day of Remembrance memorial services can be found on the National Day of Remembrance Facebook page.

Pro-lifers are also encouraged to carry on the spiritual mission of the Day of Remembrance througout the year by visiting a gravesite of aborted children or other memorial site to offer prayers of mourning for the victims of abortion. Find the site nearest you here.

During your visit, you may wish to pray one of the following prayers prepared for the National Day of Remembrance:

By participating in the National Day of Remembrance, visiting these solemn memorial places at other times of the year, and spreading the word about this prayer campaign, you are helping to humanize our aborted brothers and sisters and deepening your own commitment to ending the injustice of abortion.

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