What is the Office of Public Witness?
When Jesus was asked to state the greatest commandment, he replied, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart ... And a second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself." In this complex age, one way we love our neighbors is to help shape the laws and policies that define how we live together in God's world.
Advocacy Training Weekend 2014
March 21-24, 2014 in Washington, D.C.
Many types of violence afflict our world. Come to the Advocacy Training Weekend to address the causes of that violence and to seek hopeful solutions. Training will kickoff March 21, 2014 with Compassion, Peace and Justice Training Day for Presbyterians. Learning will continue with our ecumenical sisters and brothers during Ecumenical Advocacy Days the remainder of the weekend.
The Fall 2013 Washington Report to Presbyterians is here!
the latest news from the PC(USA) Office of Public Witness includes:
- Faith Leaders Call for Common Good Budget Deal
- A Preview of the 2014 Advocacy Training weekend, March 21-24
- A Feature on our Summer Fellows, both 2013 and our alumni – where are they now?
- Peacemakers Make a Difference on Syria
- A short recap of the Presbyterians for Earth Care Conference
- Action Alert: Boycott the Occupation of Palestine
Holy Discontentment Advocacy Resource
How to Be an Effective Advocate
Holy Discontentment: Lifting Your Voice for Effective Advocacy outlines the tools in the advocate’s toolbox, discusses their effectiveness, and gives suggestions on truly effective advocacy strategies. Now, with a newly updated section on using social media as an advocacy tool! Download
2013 Office of Public Witness Issues Brochure
The Office of Public Witness annually sets issue priorities based on directions from the General Assembly and taking into account issues that may see action from Congress or the Administration. Download the 2013 Issue Priorities Brochure
Advocacy as Discipleship
Guns and our Culture of Violence March 2013
The Office of Public Witness quarterly publishes “Advocacy as Discipleship,” a publication that provides background information to advocates on why we, as Christian Citizens, engage in public witness ministries. The first quarter publication in 2013 is by the Reverence J. Herbert Nelson, Director for Public Witness – “Guns and Our Culture of Violence.” Download
Respectful Dialogue Initiative (RDI)
Our next step: Challenging the current tide of political divisiveness
While staying with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. "This," he said, "is what you have heard from me.” (Acts 1:4)
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Office of Public Witness (OPW) is committed to partnering with congregations, sessions, and other governing bodies committed to engaging in effective advocacy work. I have visited 44 presbyteries in the past two years to deliver this message and explain the work of the OPW. During this period, Presbyterians expressed in open forums and private conversations their deep frustration with the vitriolic rhetoric emanating from Washington politicians of all political parties. It is clear that there is little hope for the Washington political establishment to rehabilitate itself. The simple reason is that “negative advertising wins campaigns.” It is incumbent upon persons in local communities to call for civility through challenging three basic assumptions: 1) politicians are more powerful than local communities; 2) partisan politics is a permanent determinant of political power that cannot be challenged; 3) politics is too divisive for our congregations to discuss.
Advocacy as Discipleship – Raise Hope for the Congo
“The Democratic Republic of the Congo has suffered from regional conflict and a deadly scramble for its vast natural resources for more than a century. Congo’s natural resources and the world’s voracious appetite for them have been the principal force behind atrocities and conflict throughout Congo’s violent and tortured history. In fact, the mineral wealth in eastern Congo today is financing multiple armed groups who use mass rape and other forms of violence as a calculated strategy to frighten, coerce, and control local populations…” Read more, download the full resource
Second Tuesday Briefing on the Hill
The Office of Public Witness offers assistance to Presbyterians who wish to visit their Members of Congress in Washington. A special program of issue briefings and congressional visits is offered to groups of Presbyterians on the second Tuesday of each month. These briefings are from 10am- 12pm followed by a complimentary lunch with a freewill offering.
The next Second Tuesday will be on September 10, 2013. Learn more
Learn more about legislation and advocacy
Holy Discontentment Advocacy Resource: Download
List of Presbyterians in the 113th Congress: Download
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