Bread for the World - 2018 Offering of Letters workshop

For Such a Time as This

Saturday, April 7, 2018
First Presbyterian Church, Allentown


Bread for the World

Lehigh County Conference of Churches

Justice & Advocacy

Gathering Schedule*

8:30 am Registration; Breakfast goodies and coffee/tea available
Resource displays and conversation with workshop leaders
9:00-10:45 Welcome, Devotions (Jack Haberer), Introductions
"For Such a Time as This"   with   Margaret Tran
11:00-12:15 Breakout session I (parallel workshops - see descriptions below)
12:15-1:00pmLunch and public policy conversation
1:00-2:15 Breakout session II (parallel workshops - see descriptions below)
2:15-2:45 Wrap-up: What comes next? / Evaluation

Plenary Theme: For Such a Time as This

The President's budget proposes substantial cuts to "safety-net" programs, including WIC, global nutrition, SNAP, and refundable tax credits that assist familes with children, senior citizens, veterans, people with disabilities and others when they encounter difficult times.
"For Such a Time as This" reminds us about the story of the Jewish queen Esther who was challenged to speak out (at risk of her life) to Persian king Ahasuerus in order to save her people from extermination. Today, we are challenged to speak out to our political representatives on behalf of the poor and vulnerable people among us.

Breakout Sessions: Seminars and Workshops*

Also see the speakers page for more details about the breakout leaders, and look for workshop updates from time to time.

1. The 2018 Farm Bill - Chris Woods
This session will provide an overview of the Farm Bill, but with a particular focus on the nutrition aspects of the Farm Bill (like SNAP), and what are the implications for our school children. The USDA has published it's priorities for the 2018 Farm Bill (here), and the President has proposed some major changes to the SNAP program. What does that mean for us?

2. The Pennsylvania Poor People's Campaign - Sheila Clever
The National Poor People's Campaign is a revival of Martin Luther King Jr.'s Poor People's Campaign in 1968. Campaign Co-Chairs are Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II and Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis. The Poor People's Campaign in Pennsylvania (and 24 other states) from May 13-June 23, 2018 will feature six weeks of nonviolent civil disobedience centered around four broad issues:

  1. Ending the War Economy.
  2. Ending Ecological Devastation.
  3. Ending Systemic Racism
  4. Ending Voter Suppression.

3. Mass Incarceration / Reentry - Henry Moore
What are the obstacles that people face returning from jail or prison, and what can we do to make reentry successful?

4. Public Policy Advocacy Basics - Margaret Tran
What are today's effective ways to communicate with members of Congress--through office visits, letters, phone calls, email, and social media? What is an "Offering of Letters," and how is it done? This breakout is designed for those new to advocacy or to Bread for the World's Offering of Letters campaign, or for those who need a new spark in their advocacy actions. Bring your questions and your successes!

*The program and workshop offerings are subject to change. Please check this page again for updates.

Last Updated: 4/3/2018
Created: February 21, 2018