Empowered by the Holy Spirit, the Office of Advocacy and Justice promotes the social mission of the Church through education and legislative advocacy efforts. Called to evangelize individuals, institutions, and the culture through personal witness and public outreach, we act on behalf of those who are voiceless. We provide opportunities in the parish and community for ongoing conversion and social transformation, seeking always to protect and defend the sacredness and dignity of human life.
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Deborah Stafford Shearer has been with the Diocese of Orlando for more than 21 years. Most of those years have been dedicated to serving as the Director for the Department of Advocacy and Justice. An Orlando native, Deborah graduated from Rollins College and holds a Master's Degree in Education from the University of Central Florida. Deborah's role is to serve as an advisor and consultant to the bishop on issues of public policy and Catholic Social Teaching. She fulfills the mission of the office by overseeing the implementation of the social mission of the Church in the Diocese of Orlando.
News and Events
Respect Life Program 2015-2016
The Parish Respect Life Packet Materials are explained here for your planning purposes. Additional materials including liturgy guides, homily suggestions, flyers and posters are available for download here.
Download graphics that compare the mapped locations of Community Health Centers across the US and in Florida versus the location of Planned Parenthood facilities, as prepared by the Charlotte Lozier Institute. An additional summary bar chart by state is available here.
The theme of the Respect Life Program 2016-2017, which begins in October 2016, will be Moved By Mercy!
Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) Multimedia Youth Arts Contest
Congratulations to our 2016 award winners! View the winning entries at the Catholic Campaign for Human Development page.
Please place the 2017 CCHD Multi-Media Youth Arts contest on your calendar (deadline March 1, 2017). Our office staff members are available to meet with teachers over the summer or during the school year to explain the guidelines and goals of this program. See more at the CCHD website.
Jubilee of Mercy - December 8, 2015 - November 20, 2016
Need a pro-life pamphlet? Do you need a good brochure to help explain our beliefs on the death penalty, stem cell research, and other issues? Search our Resource Guide and find what you've been looking for! Click here to download a list of available resources from the Office of Advocacy and Justice.
Religious Freedom at Risk
Click on the graphic to find resources about protecting religious freedom.