**red_square** Thursday, Jan. 16
Several hours after the bombing of a building housing an abortion business in Atlanta, pro-life groups quickly took the initiative and unequivocally condemned the violence. In Houston, pro-lifers took on local abortion businesses peacefully: 100 Houston-area pastors, representing every major denomination, independent and charismatic churches, and the Catholic diocese gathered in the sanctuary of one of Houston's largest churches, First United Methodist, and committed to raising $250,000 to place 22 pro-life billboards advertising a toll-free telephone number throughout the city for a year. The $58,000 that was pledged that day will pay for the first seven billboards, one near each Carenet center, meeting organizer Ray Sanders said.
The meeting came at the urging of some of Houston's major church pastors, including William Hinton of First Methodist, Ed Young of Second Baptist, and John Bisango of First Baptist. Lana Sanders, who with her husband Ray, the executive director of Houston's Crisis Pregnancy Center Central, helped plan the meeting, said, "There were men there that pro-life groups have never been able to get through the door before."
The pastors hope to encourage pregnant women to seek help at local crisis pregnancy centers rather than abortion clinics--and cut into the 40,000 abortions that occur each year in Houston.
**red_square** Friday and Saturday, Jan. 17 and 18
About 300 male and female activists, most under the age of 30, began three days of demonstrations and prayer vigils at Lafayette Park, across the street from the White House. At the demonstrations, people carried huge four-by-five foot signs picturing aborted babies. It looked as if this would be the only chance the demonstrators would have to let the president know their views since the Interior Department had rejected their request for a permit along the inaugural parade route.
Patrick Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition had been denied a permit by the Department of the Interior, which threatened to arrest abortion protesters along Pennsylvania Avenue. On Jan. 16, Judge Harold Greene ruled against his group; Mr. Mahoney appealed, but by Saturday he still had not heard.
Fifteen pro-lifers, including priests and nuns, were arrested for lying down in front of an abortion business in Englewood, N.J. A half-week later, 11 of the 15 were still in jail after refusing to reveal their names.
**red_square** Sunday, Jan. 19
While President and Mrs. Clinton listened to encouraging words at Foundry Methodist Church Sunday morning, 100 Christian Defense Coalition activists braved the frigid cold and prayed outside on the church steps.
For Emily's List, the pro-abortion PAC, the Lord's Day was a chance to rake in money. At its fundraising luncheon, scheduled not to interfere with Washington's other favorite sabbath activity, the morning political talk shows, the PAC held a fundraising luncheon to honor the new pro-abortion Democratic congresswomen.
Hours later, witnesses in Tulsa, Okla., heard two booms as a bomb or bombs exploded outside Reproductive Services abortion business, injuring no one. The same abortion clinic had been firebombed on New Year's Day, and Tulsa police were not saying whether the two acts were related. The FBI took over the Tulsa investigation because of the earlier bombing in Atlanta and the approaching anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision.
Back in Washington, 2,300 pro-lifers attended a National Memorial for the Pre-Born and their Mothers and Fathers at Hylton Chapel in Northern Virginia, where pro-life celebrities like Armstrong Williams spoke.
In good news for the Christian Defense Coalition and bad news for the president, a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issued an emergency order barring the government from interfering with CDC demonstrators along the inaugural parade route down Pennsylvania Avenue. The court said the government cannot "render the inaugural celebration a private event or change the character of a quintessential public forum--the sidewalks lining the parade route."
**red_square** Inauguration Day
Twenty-five CDC protesters took up positions along Pennsylvania Avenue to display their large signs of an aborted baby. The activists were outnumbered by thousands of offended Clinton supporters who jeered at them, called them sick, or told them to go to hell.
In Atlanta, volunteers at the Gwinnett Crisis Pregnancy Center arrived and found the center vandalized, the bolt lock spray-painted shut, and a note that read, "Stop the fake clinics. Stop the bombings. It's time to fight back." Two other metro Atlanta area CPCs were also targets of vandals.
On a slope near the Washington Monument, 100 college students, members of Collegians Activated to Liberate Life, assembled at 5:30 a.m. to set up 3,200 small white crosses in a Cemetery of Innocents. Each cross stood for one child that is killed every day by abortion.
In New York, Judge John E. Sprizzo of the U.S. District Court in Manhattan acquitted two abortion protesters for ignoring his previous order to stop violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act. The two protesters, an auxiliary bishop and a Franciscan friar, were arrested repeatedly after sitting down in an abortion clinic driveway in Dobb's Ferry, N.Y. The judge, using a 1970 Supreme Court ruling in favor of a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War, ruled that since the protesters were acting from religious beliefs they were not guilty of trespass. Further, he said even if they were guilty he was going to nullify the verdict, something juries can do to protest an unjust law.
**red_square** Tuesday, Jan. 21
Pro-lifers on Capitol Hill wasted little time in resurrecting last year's partial-birth abortion ban as an issue. Senate Republicans announced at a press conference that banning the late-term abortion method would be one of the party's 10 legislative priorities for 1997. "We are determined to do this," Majority Leader Trent Lott said. "And we will do it earlier rather than later in this first session."
Also in Washington, Kate Michelman, head of the National Abortion Rights Action League, held a press conference to release a report that contained encouraging news for pro-lifers. The report detailed the gains made by pro-life state legislators over the past year: Nine states enacted 14 protective measures in 1996; 12 states now enforce three or more abortion restrictions, a 500-percent increase from 1990.
Though incremental reforms were gaining in state legislatures, pro-lifers who came to Washington for the 24th March For Life rallied under the slogan "No One Can Serve Two Masters," and "No Exceptions! No Compromise!"
Churches throughout the Washington area planned worship services prior to Wednesday's anniversary observances. Thousands attended a mass at the Basilica of the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the largest Catholic church in the country. Later Tuesday night, the church, located near the campus of Catholic University, provided shelter to hundreds of college students who camped out with sleeping bags in the church basement.
**red_square** Wednesday, Jan. 22
Early Wednesday morning, some pro-lifers bearing roses visited congressional offices as they have annually for 23 years; others debated ways to bring Catholic voters back to their pro-life roots.
A small explosion near a Planned Parenthood office in Washington raised tensions, but police said later that it had no connection to abortion.
That didn't stop Vice President Al Gore and First Lady Hillary Clinton from exploiting the scare and scoring points with radical abortion activists at a Mayflower Hotel luncheon sponsored by the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League. The vice president proved he had evolved on the issue and cemented his pro-abortion credentials with rhetoric that thrilled the activists: "We will not let you terrorize America's women. We will not let you debase our constitution.... We will find you." Hillary Clinton spoke later to the same group, promising to extend the abortion liberty throughout the world, while making "abortion safe, legal, and rare."
One hundred twenty-five thousand pro-lifers gathered under gray skies to mark the anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision as they have since 1974, when the first March For Life drew about 50 hard-core activists.
Temperatures in the 40s were a welcome break in a string of sub-freezing days that had gripped Washington for more than a week. According to Connie Marshner, who was present at that first March For Life 23 years ago, this March was different. "The marchers are younger," she said. "The March has become a cultural event.... It's a rite of passage for a young pro-life person."
Groups from different colleges chanted while marching under banners displaying their college names. Younger people and folks on rollerblades sped past in the fast lanes, while the older folks and moms pushing strollers walked more leisurely along the March route.
Two college students in Delaware were not at the March for Life.
Brian Peterson and Amy Grossberg, the couple who accused of killing their newborn baby in a hotel room several months ago, sat in a Delaware courtroom as a judge set the terms of their bail. According to reports, the couple sat together in the courtroom, heads bent together, whispering and even giggling occasionally.