Six young people walked across Canada to raise awareness about abortion and were greeted in the nation's capital by Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast.

A pro-life witness that extended 5,000 km from Vancouver to Ottawa was completed on August 14 when the Crossroads Walkers arrived in the nation’s capital, welcomed by dozens of local pro-life supports, including Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast.

The group of six arrived at the Hill around noon, where they were awarded a certificate of accomplishment by Audrey Lemieux, wife of pro-life MP Pierre Lemieux (C, Glengarry-Prescott-Russell) and later attended a reception where the MP congratulated the walkers in person.

The walkers, sporting t-shirts that declared them as “Pro-Life,” set out from Vancouver on May 24, made their way as far East as Baie-Saint-Paul in Quebec, before backtracking to Ottawa. A core group of six were sometimes joined by local pro-lifers as they walked weekdays and stopped in towns and cities on weekends to speak to churches and youth groups and pray and witness outside abortuaries and hospitals that do abortions. They covered an average of one hundred kilometers each day and completed their walk in just under three months.

Paul Lauzon of Campaign Life Coalition Ottawa praised the Crossroads initiative for bringing attention to the pro-life issue across the country. “Crossroads takes the pro-life message to places where it does not go usually,” he said. “So it got to a lot of new people who weren’t aware of the issue.”

Frances Platt, a teacher from Killaloe, Ont., who joined them for the last part of their walk, said she enjoyed the experience although she described it as grueling. She noted both positive and negative responses, but expressed surprise that there was little reaction in Quebec. “It’s almost like pro-life wasn’t even an issue for them,” she told, saying there was “a lot of puzzled shock.”

Lauzon, who attended the reception for the walkers in Ottawa, said that through efforts like this, “people are being born that would normally have not been born, and women and families are happier, because their child is born.” He added: “I think it changes their lives and all the lives of the people that they speak to and that they meet on the way … I think it radiates quite a bit more than we think.”