The advocacy ministries of the ELCA seek to engage Lutherans from an ethic of discipleship and willingness to speak for others as a matter of faith. The ELCA advocacy staff works to educate Lutherans and equip them to speak boldly to elected officials, voicing the importance of policy that protects vulnerable people and God's creation.
ELCA advocacy works for change in public policy based on priorities expressed by ELCA members and the experiences of Lutheran ministries, programs and projects around the world and in communities across the United States. The offices take positions consistent with biblical and Lutheran teachings, ELCA social policy language and with reference to this church's membership in ecumenical and international bodies.
Help frame ELCA advocacy work by completing the ELCA Advocacy National Priorities survey. By completing this short, four-question survey, you help the church’s advocacy ministries facilitate this active and growing network of Lutherans.
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Food is a basic need. Students and teachers need to eat, as do senior citizens and day-care children. Republicans and Democrats need to eat. Veterans and construction workers, insurance agents and journalists need to eat.
Food not only sustains our bodies, but so much of the economy relates to the processes by which we grow, harvest, transport, cook, bake, package, distribute, sell and buy what we eat. "Give us this day our daily bread …." | Read more »
(source: Interreligious Working Group on Domestic Human Needs) As people of faith, we must look at federal budgets and ask if proposals are establishing unrealistic spending caps, suggesting unbalanced budget amendments, which would lead to higher poverty or inequality, or causing more harm to the environment. The budget process begins with the president's budget request. Each year the president’s budget is release in mid-February. Next, the House and Senate budget committees craft a congressional budget resolution — an outline of spending levels for broad categories (called 302(a) allocations). Both chambers must pass identical budget resolutions; however, the resolution doesn't carry the force of law and it does not go to the president to be signed. Instead, the budget resolution gives guidance to appropriators. While the budget resolution is not law, it determines the overall size of the pie for low-income programs funded through the appropriations process and other discretionary programs. Usually, by mid-April, the action shifts to the appropriations committees. The House and Senate appropriations leaders establish spending limits for their 12 subcommittees (302(b) allocations), which then work within these amounts to fund individual programs in their area (such as agriculture or foreign operations). Next, the various spending bills must be passed within their subcommittees, the full House and Senate appropriations committees, and by the entire House and Senate. Within the budget, there are two types of spending: discretionary and mandatory. Discretionary spending is determined through the annual budget process. Funding for any discretionary program may be higher or lower than it was the year before. Finally, the two chambers negotiate and approve a final version, which the President signs.Additional Resources:Introduction to the Federal Budget ProcessGlossary of Budget Terms