The Mother Teresa rally proved to be a success on many fronts. Held on August 26, to mark her centenary, the rally drew over 3,000 persons. We know this because the police estimated that the area cordoned off for the participants holds 6,500, and we filled more than half the area. And this doesn’t count the large numbers who watched from the sidewalks on both sides of 34th Street, between 5th Ave. and Broadway.
Seventeen notables spoke at the rally (see pp. 10-12). There were politicians from both the Republican and Democrat Parties; there were celebrities, religious figures and New York icons; there were Albanians, African Americans, Indians, Irish, Italians, Jews, Latinos and others; there were Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Muslims and Hindus. The diversity of the speakers proved our point: Mother Teresa transcended all demographic boundaries.
The TV coverage of the rally was spectacular: we led the evening news on practically every New York channel, as well as the next morning’s news. The newspaper coverage was mixed. The worst coverage was given by Newsday, which not only erred wildly in reporting the size of the crowd, it refused to print a letter by Jeff Field challenging its estimate.
Bill Donohue noted that it was a sign of Divine Providence that Anthony Malkin, the owner of the Empire State Building, was himself rejected when the New York City Council denied his request to prohibit the building of a new skyscraper in the vicinity of his trophy building. He was rejected the day before the rally.