Office of Advocacy and Justice





A Journey of Faith and Justice

This all day free retreat will challenge you to put your faith into action while providing times for prayer, reflection, and dialogue. Join us on August 4, 2012 at St. Peter Catholic Church (359 New York Ave., Deland), from 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Fr. Tom Connery, Pastor of St. Peter Catholic Church, and Fr. Chris Hoffmann, Pastor of Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church, are featured presenters. For more information or to register to attend, contact Office of Advocacy and Justice; 407-246-4819;

Catholic Relief Service – Million Meals Challenge

This November 18, Catholic Relief Services will sponsor “The Million Meals Challenge Orlando,” the first of its kind volunteer driven meal packing event at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel on International Drive. Catholics in Central Florida and the community at large together will package ONE MILLION meals for a small impoverished country in Africa, Burkina Faso.  Individuals and families, youth groups and organizations are invited to join in solidarity to see, touch and package a meal that will be here in Orlando one day and the next day feeding someone who hasn’t had a meal for weeks in Africa.  Registration is available at: for more information call the Office of Advocacy and Justice at 407-246-4822 or email:

CRS Fair Trade End of Summer Sale!

To thank you for supporting CRS Work of Human Hands, we’re offering 25% off almost everything we have in stock, now through noon EDT on 7/30/12!* Browse Home Decor, Kitchen, Women, and even some Overstock. Make sure to tell your friends about this great sale!

As always, our artisan partners have already been paid in full, so shop today to bring hope and opportunity to families around the world.   Shop now.

*Sale excludes food, chocolate, furniture, promo items, and gift baskets. Sale excludes items in New Markdowns. Prices not valid on prior orders. No backorders. Orders must ship to one address. Sale prices good on consumer orders only. Sale prices good on orders received by noon EDT on 7/30/12. 

To Order Online:, Phone: (800) 685.7572, Fax: (888) 294.6376.


Faithful Citizenship

On September 24, at Annunciation Catholic Church, there will be a presentation from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. on important election issues and Church teaching. Topics include:

  • How to inform you conscience
  • What are the threats to our religious freedom
  • Why the Church supports Amendment 6 and 8
  • What is the Catholic’s role in political participation


Bishop John Noonan, Diocese of Orlando, will comment on Forming Your Consciences in an election year; Kathy Saile, Director of Domestic Policy at the USCCB, will address Political Responsibility & Protecting Human Life; Michael Sheedy, Associate Director for Health at the Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops, will speak on State Voter Education and Amendment 6 and 8.  Register to attend by emailing: or call: 407-246-4819


Advocacy Efforts

Urge Secretary of State Clinton to Reject Actions that Undermine Peace in the Holy Land

Take Action Now! Urge Secretary of State Clinton to reinforce the unequivocal opposition of the United States to actions that undermine a two-state solution to the Holy Land conflict, make Israel less secure, and create more obstacles to a viable and independent Palestinian state.

Background: The Israeli government is currently reviewing recommendations in a report it commissioned that would include the legalization of all settlement outposts. The report known as the “Levy Commission Report” is named for its chairman, former Israeli Supreme Court Justice Edmond Levy. The report rejects the internationally recognized “occupation” of the West Bank, and proposes that Israelis be allowed to settle most anywhere in the West Bank. The Commission declared that all Jewish settlements are legal, even those ruled illegal by the Israeli Supreme Court. If the report is adopted, it could undermine a two-state solution to the Holy Land conflict and preclude the establishment of a viable Palestinian state living in peace alongside a recognized and secure Israel. 

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) support a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and believe that any actions that undermine a negotiated peace between the two parties, such as the Levy Report, must be challenged. Therefore, USCCB and CRS agree with Secretary Clinton when she recently stated after meetings with Israeli officials that “it is only through negotiation, and not through international venues or unilateral acts, that peace can be and will be secured.” Read a recent letter from Bishop Richard E. Pates to Secretary of State Clinton for more information. See also a recent letter from 40 prominent U.S. Jewish leaders.

Take Action Now!

 Stand with the Israeli and Palestinian people for peace. Support consistent and persistent U.S. leadership to challenge and restrain both parties to the conflict and to hold them accountable for mutual steps needed for a just peace. Palestinians must improve security by halting attacks on civilians, blocking illegal arms shipments, disarming militias, and improving governance and transparency to build capacity for a future state. Israel needs to freeze expansion of settlements, withdraw “illegal outposts,” ease restrictions on the movement of Palestinians, and refrain from disproportionate military responses.

Support Conscience Rights Provisions

During the week of July 23, the House Appropriations Committee is expected to mark up the Fiscal Year 2013 Labor/Health and Human Services Appropriations Bill (not yet numbered). As reported by subcommittee, the bill contains two provisions that enhance conscience protection in health care for millions of Americans.

If your Representative serves on the Appropriations Committee, please activate your lists as appropriate to urge your Representative to support these two provisions and to oppose any attempt to delete or weaken them. NCHLA’s Action Alert can be found at: When e-mails are sent through the NCHLA Grassroots Action Center, the service will automatically determine if a user’s Representative is a member of the committee.  A list of Appropriations Committee members can be found at:

The two provisions in the bill, Sections 537 and 538, respond to the conscience protection problems arising from the new health care law and to emerging problems of governmental agencies forcing health care entities to perform, participate in, or pay for abortions. Cardinal DiNardo, chairman of the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, had urged the subcommittee to approve these provisions and publicly welcomed its decision to do so. See:


Aging Resource

Florida Department of Elder Affairs Free Assistance

The Florida Department of Elder Affairs offers a free and confidential service through SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) volunteers throughout Florida.  Trained volunteers are available to assist Medicare beneficiaries, their families, caregivers, and others with Medicare and other health insurance questions.  If you would like a speaker for your parish or ministry group, call 407.514.1823 or for individual assistance, please call toll free 1-800-963-5337 or visit