Baudouin of Belgium abdicated the throne in 1990. It was not for any ignoble cause or selfish pursuit that the King stepped down from his position of authority. King Baudouin abdicated because he was pro-life. The Belgian Parliament had passed a law allowing abortion and he could not add his signature to the bill as required by procedure.
Baudouin, who had been imprisoned by the Nazis in WWII, was loyally Catholic. He was also loyally Belgian. To be loyally Belgian meant to be loyal to and serve all his subjects. There was no difference, in his mind, between a 95 year old with Alzheimer’s in a nursing home, a fully capable and healthy person in his 40s, and a child in her mother's womb. A fetus might be completely dependent on her mother, but she is still a separate person with a unique DNA and identity. We would not kill a 4 month old sleeping under a blanket. She still exists though she cannot be seen or heard. How could we kill a child hidden under the skin of her mother's abdomen? Baudouin was a true king, serving his people whom he had sworn to protect, both born and unborn.
The King's action and example had a profound and positive effect on the people. In fact, his secretary was at the time planning to abort her own pregnancy. Seeing the king's witness and reading the many letters thanking the king for his defense of life, she changed her mind. She could not take the life of her innocent child within her womb.
January 22 can be a reminder that the true kings and queens are not those who are served, but those who serve and give their life as a ransom for many.