This Fall, ELCA World Hunger was invited to join leaders from Arizona via Zoom at the first statewide gathering of advocates and friends hosted by Lutheran Advocacy Ministry Arizona (LAMA).
LAMA is the newest State Public Policy Office of the ELCA, in partnership with the Grand Canyon Synod, ELCA World Hunger and Lutheran Social Services of the Southwest. LAMA joins a network of 15 public policy offices operating in 18 states. This network is a critical part of the work of ELCA Advocacy. On a state level, LAMA and the other state public policy offices amplify the voices of Lutherans for fair and equitable policies on housing, education, health care, employment and so much more. Working for just policies is an important way people of faith participate in God’s work of building a just world where all are fed.
John Johnson, program director for domestic policy for the ELCA, highlights the importance of this work to the work God calls this church to pursue:
Our return on investment for advocacy is one of the great untold successes of the ELCA. Our federal and state advocacy leverages BILLIONS of public dollars annually for vulnerable populations at home and abroad. In 2020, with COVID-19 recovery packages in Congress, Lutherans have engaged policy makers to the tune of trillions of dollars.
Below are recordings of the Summit presentations from Ryan P. Cumming, program director of hunger education for ELCA World Hunger, and Angie Rogers, president and CEO of the Arizona Food Bank Network.
Angie Rodgers spoke about the state of hunger in Arizona, the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ways Lutherans can make a difference through advocacy.
Ryan Cumming spoke about the importance of advocacy in the work and mission of the church and the difference between responding to hunger and ending it.