Heather Hirsch

Cancer researcher, mother, Catholic

Cottage Grove, MN

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No woman plans on needing an abortion. But I was raised not to judge others, and I believe in my Catholic faith, and I have faith in others to make the right choices for themselves. We are called by our faith to advocate most strongly for policies that protect and lift up all people, particularly the poorest and most vulnerable.

“I believe in my Catholic faith and I have faith in others to make the right choices for themselves.”

I am a practicing Catholic woman. I say practicing because my faith is something I have to work at every day. I am also prochoice—without apology or qualification. Abortion is a legal medical procedure and should be treated the same as every other legal medical procedure. No matter what she decides, a woman should be able to carry out her choice safely, with dignity and without having to face any obstacles. As Catholics, we believe in conscience. We believe that everyone has a God-given voice that resonates within us and guides us in our decision-making. Nothing and nobody less than God can take that voice away from us. 

I watched my daughter make her first Communion in the church where I grew up and made my own first Communion. She was wearing the same dress I had worn. It was an emotional moment for me. I so want her to have a positive relationship with our church and deepen her faith, but I struggle because the Catholic hierarchy is pushing me—and other young women—away.

I want my daughter, and all other young women, to grow up happy and healthy in a world where they don’t have to worry about access to birth control or abortion. I am in favor of public funding for abortion because I trust women to make the choices that are right for them. I hope you join me in this struggle.

Stand up with Heather

By taking the pledge, I invite Catholics for Choice to email me with additional ways to get involved.