The 2016 Virginia General Assembly session kicked off on Wednesday with the swearing in of all Delegates and Senators, who were all elected or re-elected this past November. The Conference looks forward to working with all members-new and old-to further the common good.
The Virginia Catholic Conference and partner pro-life organizations made our voices heard at the 2016 Virginia Stands for Life Rally on Wednesday. The rally, organized by the Family Foundation, was headlined by prominent pro-life activist and former Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson. Over 275 people braved the freezing temperatures to show our legislators that Virginia stands for life, and that we will continue to fight to advance the sanctity of life and resist any efforts to roll back crucial, hard-won victories for the unborn. Several bills have been introduced to curb abortions, including a bill to protect Virginia taxpayers from being forced to subsidize Planned Parenthood and the Pain Capable Infant Protection Act, which seeks to ban most abortions after 20 weeks.
The Conference staff is in the process of reviewing hundreds of bills as they are filed, and meeting with legislators about our priorities. We look forward to providing you advocacy alerts and keeping you up to date throughout the 2016 session of the Virginia General Assembly.
Mark your calendar for these upcoming Advocacy events:
There will be several opportunities for Catholics across the Commonwealth to advocate for the common good during the 2016 session. Mark your calendars and join us for the following advocacy events:
- Church in State 2016: A Catholic Look at Issues Facing the Virginia General Assembly: 10:30 – noon, Saturday, Jan. 16, Holy Family Catholic Church, Dale City. Join Father Gerry Creedon, chair, Catholic Diocese of Arlington Peace and Justice Commission, and Jeff Caruso, Conference executive director, to learn the theological and ethical principles that guide the Church’s public policy initiatives, as well as the public policy priorities of Virginia’s Catholic bishops during the upcoming session.
- Annual March for Life: Friday, Jan. 22, Washington DC. Contact your parish office for more information.
- Virginia Vespers: Evening Prayer for the Commonwealth: 5 p.m., Wednesday, February 17. At the midpoint of the General Assembly session, join our bishops, lawmakers, public officials, Catholic leaders and parishioners, educators and social service practitioners and others of goodwill for this special evening prayer liturgy for the needs of Virginia at Richmond’s historic Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, pilgrimage site for the Jubilee Year of Mercy. Reception follows. Please register here.
- Catholics in the Capital: Tuesday, Jan. 26; Thursday, Feb. 4; or Wednesday, Feb. 17. Set up appointments with your legislators in Richmond. Conference staff will meet informally with advocates before legislative meetings to provide resources.