Advocacy at the Catholic Social Ministry Gathering
One of the most important aspects of the annual Catholic Social Ministry Gathering (CSMG) is participating in meetings with members of Congress and their staff on issues of key concern to Catholics. CSMG 2023 participants should plan on meeting with their elected officials in person if possible. CSMG Legislative Priorities will be identified for the Gathering so participants can speak with a unified voice to our representatives on Capitol Hill. Helpful briefing materials will be made available, and State Captains will help organize state delegations so participants can learn best practices for advocacy and effectively articulate the Catholic position on this year’s legislative priorities.
The following is a draft agenda of advocacy-related events for the 2023 Catholic Social Ministry Gathering. The days and times of these events may change.
Advocacy 101 Training: Saturday, 1:30 p.m.-2:45 p.m. - First-Timers Orientation and Advocacy Training 101 (intended for those new to legislative advocacy)
State Captain Caucus: Saturday, 2:30 p.m.-3:00 p.m. - State captains and co-captains meet to finalize details on organizing their state delegations and receive Capitol Hill "leave behind packets." (State captains are identified ahead of time.)
Legislative Issues Briefing: Monday, 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. - Domestic and International policy briefings on legislative issues – this is an excellent opportunity to ask questions and to receive clarifications and the most up-to-date information on the issues we will be advocating for on Capitol Hill.
State Delegation Meetings: Monday, 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m. - State delegations meet with your state captain.
Advocacy 201 Training: Monday, 4:45 p.m.-5:30p.m. - Sharpen skills and answer lingering questions on policy issues before heading to Capitol Hill. (Optional)
Capitol Hill Visits: Tuesday, 10:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m. - Don't forget to leave a packet of information with each office you visit. State captains will distribute packets to their delegations. If you need additional packets, see the registration desk for more copies.
Capitol Hill Reception: Tuesday, 3:30 p.m.-5:00 p.m. - Please invite Members of Congress and their staff to attend. Copies of the invitation will be in the CSMG "leave-behind packets."
General Resources for Legislative Advocacy
Making an impact with CSMG and Year-Round Advocacy:
Join other Catholics in doing legislative advocacy at the annual Catholic Social Ministry Gathering (CSMG). For more than 30 years, CSMG has brought together hundreds of participants whose faith inspires them to address pressing current domestic and global challenges affecting our most vulnerable brothers and sisters at home and around the world.
Completion of the Hill Visit Report Form gives us information about your Capitol Hill Visits—who you met with and their response to our legislative priorities. Your feedback will help staff members of the CSMG collaborating organizations in our ongoing advocacy efforts.
After CSMG we encourage you to continue the effort at home by planning "District Visits" with your Senators, Representatives, or their staff members back in your home state or district. District Visits help us, in the words of Pope Francis, "dialogue, dialogue, dialogue" with our political leaders, as well as deepen the relationships we hope that you established during your CSMG Capitol Hill Visits in Washington D.C. Visits throughout the year help Catholics to connect the efforts of national organizations with the voices of local communities, partner organizations, parishioners, and dedicated volunteers in support of the legislative priorities of the Church advanced at the annual Catholic Social Ministry Gathering in Washington D.C.