Massive Rally Brings out 1,300+ Pro-Lifers in Aurora

Over 1,300 activists answered the Pro-Life Action League’s call to take part in a rally August 25 against the largest Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in the U.S., scheduled to open in the city September 18. The event was held one day after the League filed a federal lawsuit against the City of Aurora for violating pro-life demonstrators’ free speech rights.

A grassroots coalition called Fox Valley Families Against Planned Parenthood has been praying and protesting outside the Planned Parenthood building since August 9.

A small part of the picket line August 25—See larger version [Photo by Sam Scheidler]

Four-Part Rally: Picket, Truth Tour, Vigil, Leafleting

Chanting “Life Yes, Abortion No!” and holding signs provided by the League that read, “Keep Abortion Out of Aurora”, “Planned Parenthood Kills Babies”, “Moms for Life”, “Dads for Life”, and “Stop Abortion Now”, over 900 pro-lifers filled a picket line stretching one-fifth of a mile along New York Street between Eola Road and Oakhurst Drive. Some activists brought their own signs, with messages like, “Not In My Neighborhood” and “Planned Parenthood: Killing Unborn Children. How’s That for Planning?”

Another 250 people joined the round-the-clock 40-Day Prayer Vigil along the sidewalk adjacent to the clinic, beseeching God to prevent the Planned Parenthood facility from opening. Across the street from the Prayer Vigil site, two dozen activists put on a “Life Display” with signs of babies, both born and unborn.

Seventy-five activists participated in a Face the Truth Tour, holding graphic abortion signs along in four directions leading up to the busy intersection of New York Street & Eola Road. Many drivers gave the pro-lifers thumbs-up or honks of encouragement.

Eric Scheidler (left) addresses the pro-life crowd at the conclusion of the Rally—See larger version [Photo by Elizabeth Carlos]

In addition, over forty pro-lifers dispersed throughout the area to deliver 10,000 flyers explaining to the neighbors of the new “Abortion Fortress” why we oppose Planned Parenthood, and to urge them to join us in our activism against the facility.

Rally Marks Growing Opposition to Planned Parenthood

At the conclusion of the rally, the League’s Joe Scheidler and Eric Scheidler thanked all those who came out to protest against Planned Parenthood, and encouraged them to never give up the fight against abortion. The crowd joined in singing “Amazing Grace,” and were accompanied by young bagpiper Philip Keppel.

No more than twenty pro-abortion demonstrators—representing such organizations as NOW and the Socialist Workers Party—came out to counter the rally, and those who did left long before it was over.

The event garnered media coverage in the Chicago Tribune, the Aurora Beacon News, the Daily Herald, and Fox News Chicago.

Eric Scheidler noted, “From the police on down to the reporters there was great appreciation for how well organized the event was, and the mood of the crowd was just invigoratingly enthusiastic. Many people told me that it was the most exciting rally that they’d been to.”

One such person was longtime activist Luann Bloom, who commented to the League staff after the rally, “God really blessed all your work with this whole outpouring. It was amazing.”

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