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Bob Gilligan directs the Catholic Conference of Illinois (CCI), the public policy voice of the Catholic Church in the state, and is an advocate for issues of importance to Catholic families, schools and social service agencies.

Monday, August 27, 2012

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Phil. 4:13)

This Scripture verse calls us to put our faith into action, since Jesus Christ is always with us. And now Cardinal George and the other five diocesan bishops of Illinois are calling on you to put your faith into action with the Catholic Conference of Illinois and its Illinois Catholic Advocacy Network (I-CAN).

The Catholic Conference of Illinois (CCI) is the voice of the Church at the state Capitol. CCI this summer launched I-CAN to keep lay Catholics informed on issues affecting the Church and her mission at the state and federal government levels. CCI in early June mailed a package of I-CAN sign-up pew cards to every parish in the state. During the “Fortnight for Freedom” from June 21 – July 4, pastors were asked to give a brief talk about the benefits of joining I-CAN, and collect completed cards from interested parishioners.

We at the Catholic Conference have been tabulating the cards, and so far, we’ve garnered 10,000 I-CAN members throughout the state. But that’s just a start – we need even more members to be truly effective. Click here to sign up through our website, www.ilcatholic.org.

Members can expect occasional email updates from us on state and federal issues important to the Church. Additionally, they can visit our website to find and contact their state legislators or members of the U.S. House and Senate. Subscribers can also use our website to write a letter to an Illinois newspaper on an issue. It’s all under “Take Action” in the menu bar at the top of our site.

We promise not to inundate I-CAN members with emails. After a welcoming message, CCI next plans to send an email to the network in mid- to late-September, when we launch a series of bulletin inserts written by our bishops on issues to ponder before the Nov. 6 election. These topics will include conscience, religious freedom, and moral clarity on where a candidate stands on specific issues.

When the Illinois legislature meets in late November for its six-day fall session, we’ll send out a preview. We’ll do the same before the new legislative session in January.

If an issue gets hot and requires action, we’ll send out an alert to the Network, perhaps asking members to send an email to their state lawmaker or member of Congress. We’ll even compose the email for you, and send you a link to click on to send it.

The Illinois Catholic Advocacy Network offers an easy way to stay informed and make your voice heard – both key priorities during this time when our religious freedom is under assault.

Sign up today!

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