Advocacy Ministry Workshop this Saturday: Faith in Action

Join us for ECS-NJ’s 4th Summit on Building and Equipping the Beloved Community

“Advocacy Ministry: Faith in Action”
with The Rev. Sara Lilja
The ECS-NJ Advisory Council will share the recipients of the recent cycle of the ECS-NJ Grant and keynote speaker The Rev. Sara Lilja will provide an interactive presentation on advocacy and faith.
Saturday, April 23
10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
On Zoom
Register Now
Join us for an engaging forum focused on grounding advocacy in faith that will educate, inspire, and energize all participants for active engagement in the work of building and equipping the “Beloved Community.” Our Baptismal Covenant is to strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being. To live into this calling, we must walk alongside our neighbors who are shouldering the burdens of injustice.  We are not advocating for the poor, but advocating with our neighbors.
This two-hour summit will provide an overview of the theology of civic engagement, accompaniment and systemic injustice and then dive into the practical skills needed to be effective in the public arena.
As a result of this presentation, participants will:
  • ground their advocacy work in their faith
  • have an opportunity to think deeply about how systems can change
  • have a better understanding of how to begin an advocacy ministry in their context
About The Rev. Sara Lilja

The Rev. Sara Lilja is a Lutheran pastor who has served in the role of Executive Director for Advocacy of the Lutheran Episcopal Advocacy Ministry of New Jersey for the past 10 years. She is a graduate of the Lutheran Theological School at Gettysburg, and is a doctoral candidate at Garrett Evangelical Seminary.  Her area of interest is the psychoanalytic study of organizations with a particular focus on structural issues. She is a Fellow in the American Assoc. of Pastoral Counselors and has extensive experience working with women who are survivors of domestic violence.  She is a co-founder of The Dialogue Center for Consulting where she served as a managing partner. She has also served the church as a solo pastor, interim pastor and Assistant to the Bishop for Justice and Advocacy.

During her years coordinating advocacy in the state of New Jersey she has helped alleviate poverty and violence. She counts as some of her many accomplishments; increasing TANF and EITC, gun violence prevention, the minimum wage increase, and creation of Paid Sick for all workers in NJ.   Working with coalition partners and congregations, she organizes faith voices to amplify the needs of New Jerseyans with limited choices, most especially those who are poor, formerly incarcerated, and immigrants. She has also worked tirelessly to help dismantle structural racism in our state through the restoration of voting rights for those with criminal convictions, advocating for the end housing discrimination and access to affordable high-quality health care for all.

Sara is a mom of 2 young adult women and the wife of an academic librarian.  She loves to hike, kayak, garden and bake.

Episcopal Community Services of the Diocese of New Jersey (ECS-NJ)
ECS-NJ will strengthen our collective ability to meet human needs by providing financial, logistical and networking support to those critical ministries offered by our under-resourced congregations, while working in a coordinated way for meaningful, systemic change, challenging the unjust structures of society.

The mission of the semi-annual Summit on Building and Equipping the Beloved Community is to provide a safe and accessible space where issues related to social justice and the elimination of poverty in the state of New Jersey and beyond can be seriously and respectfully considered. We believe that a network of parishioners, concerned citizens and religious and civic leaders meeting together and sharing ideas, information and best practices will have a positive impact. The creation of compassionate communities where God’s vision of justice, peace and love, which enhance the dignity, health and well-being of all people, can become a reality.

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