"Half of our generation is missing. Sixty million have been killed ... which is why I am dedicating my time to the March for Life."
March for Life
Abortion opponents marking the huge annual March for Life in Washington on Thursday and anticipating legislative gains by a Republican-dominated Congress were thrown into disarray after GOP leaders unexpectedly withdrew an anti-abortion bill that had been seen as a done deal.
The 42nd rally on the National Mall and march to the U.S. Supreme Court marks the anniversary of the Supreme Court's 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade.
Making a Difference: Francis said abortion is a product of a "widespread mentality of profit, the 'throwaway culture,' which today enslaves the hearts and intelligences of so many."
Almost two weeks after the national March for Life rally in Washington, the Guttmacher Institute reported a 13 percent drop in national abortion rates from 2008 to 2011 -- making for the lowest rate since 1973 when abortion on demand was legalized in the U.S.
However, "no evidence was found" of a correlation between the declining rate and new abortion restrictions set between 2008 and 2011, said the study released Feb. 3.
Braving near-record low temperatures, thousands of young people from across the United States gathered in Washington for the 41st annual March for Life.
The March for Life traditionally has a strong Catholic presence. But this year, organizers reached out to evangelicals.
Pope Francis so far has been mostly mum on the topic of abortion, choosing instead to center the issue around the bigger picture of social justice.