The students are members of Life139, Union’s pro-life student group. They also participated in Evangelicals for Life and Students for Life conferences while in D.C.
“Abortion is the greatest human rights issue of our generation,” said Andrew Edmiston, a junior physics major and president of Life139. “It affects all races, all people. It’s the human life at its most innocent stage.”
Paul Mayer, director for health services at Union and sponsor for Life139, traveled with the students. He said he was excited to see so many students eager to take a stand for their beliefs. He said the students heard from experienced leaders and met the politicians who make important decisions on life issues.
“You would think evangelicals for life would be a redundant term,” Mayer said. “But it’s really not. It’s important that we come together with one voice and say, ‘This is what we believe.’ ”
C. Ben Mitchell, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Union, was part of a panel on pro-life issues at the Evangelicals for Life conference. He said as a Christ-centered, people-focused institution, Union is invested in life issues.
“God has made every human being in His image and likeness,” Mitchell said. “We have a moral duty to respect and protect people from womb to tomb. That our students see this as such an important event is a great encouragement to all of us.”
This was the first time Life139 students have participated in the march and conferences.
Edmiston said Life139 takes its name from Psalm 139 and seeks to raise awareness about abortion issues and mobilize students to make a difference. The group regularly partners with Birth Choice, a crisis pregnancy center in Jackson, and holds fundraisers and other events throughout the year.
“We get involved wherever we can,” Edmiston said. “But the importance of prayer cannot be overemphasized.”