Story: Religion and society

1970s marches: anti-abortion rally (2nd of 3)

1970s marches: anti-abortion rally

Heading this anti-abortion march in Wellington in 1974 are (from left) Sir William Liley, Dr Diana Mason, Ruth Kirk and Archbishop R. J. Delargey. Liley was an obstetrician and gynaecologist who pioneered techniques for treating foetuses. He was an atheist, but was appointed to the Vatican's Pontifical Academy of the Sciences, and was the first president of the Society for the Protection of the Unborn Child (SPUC). Mason was a doctor and a nominal Anglican. Kirk was the wife of Norman Kirk, the prime minister, who had been brought up in a devout Salvation Army household and became a strong opponent of abortion. Delargey was the archbishop of Wellington and subsequently a cardinal. People with a strong religious background, especially Catholics, played a leading role in opposing abortion law reform during the 1970s and 1980s.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Dominion Post Collection (PAColl-7327)
Reference: EP/1974/6130/33-F

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

John Stenhouse, 'Religion and society - Towards secularism and religious diversity, 1970–21st century', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 26 October 2021)

Story by John Stenhouse, published 5 May 2011, reviewed & revised 4 Apr 2018