This year’s Catholics at the Capitol event, put on by the Minnesota Catholic Conference, had two main legislative points of emphasis, both of which are important and worthwhile. We encourage you to visit the organization’s website and learn about all the initiatives which the MCC, the public policy voice of Minnesota’s bishops, are advocating, and to get involved in the network that reaches out to legislators on issues of importance to us as Catholics.
However, one of those points of emphasis — a group of legislative initiatives supporting the “first 1,000 days of life” — warrants a second look, because it seems like an inspired way to open a conversations with state politicians.
One of the main points of Catholics at the Capitol at the Capitol, of course, is to bring Catholics into contact with their elected officials and start building relationships of “civic friendship” with them. That’s our model of political engagement, and it’s a good push back against the cynicism that might wonder if anyone is listening.
And if, in those conversations, we want to not be seen as part of the partisan divide, we could hardly ask for a more compelling package than the one about the first 1,000 days of life — one that recognizes life beginning at conception and supports things like prenatal care and then also includes initiatives to assist children and families for the first two years of life outside the womb for the child, with things like breastfeeding support and home visits.
Being pro-life for children in the womb and children outside the womb and, indeed, for people all the way through their natural lives, has always been our conviction. When our legislative initiatives teach that just by their very nature? That’s a win in itself.