An estimated 15,000 people attended the Canadian March for Life on Thursday in Ottawa.

James Hughes, national president of the Campaign Life Coalition, said marchers were upbeat, and the clergy powerfully represented the faith.

"Mother Teresa on Parliament Hill back in the late '80s … turned to me and said 'the interesting thing about the prolife movement is that it is ordinary people doing extraordinary things for God'," Hughes recounted.

Pro-choice activists blocked the original route for this year's march. Organizers were prepared, Hughes said, and had prepared alternate routes in advance. They also beefed up security.

Among the challenges facing the nation's pro-life movement is a new requirement in the Canadian Summer Jobs Grants program which requires applicants to support the government's pro-choice view to receive public funding.

This year, the Campaign Life Coalition was denied the $75,000 it usually receives to pay for summer workers. The organization has run a summer program for around 35 years.

The Canadian March for Life began 21 years ago, when Hughes was encouraged to start it by Nellie Gray, the founder for the annual pro-life march in Washington D.C.

"Despite the many defeats we have encountered over the last 40 years, we soldier on doing [God's] work, and a new culture of life will come along in Canada in his own time," Hughes said.

All photos courtesy of Robert DuBroy.