Pastor Matt Staniz of Temple Lutheran Church in Havertown, PA has been a ONE member for several years and an amazing advocate for the world’s poorest people. He has consistently done some pretty impressive things to promote education, awareness, and advocacy for ONE including speaking at the press conference when Philadelphia, PA was declared a ONE city; making his voice heard with our elected officials; and helping to raise awareness in the faith community by writing “sermon starters” for the ELCA regarding the global HIV/AIDS Pandemic and holding a “Lazarus Sunday”.
I asked Pastor Matt what ONE means to him and this was his response:
“The ONE Campaign is a vital movement in the world today. It reflects the type of love that we must have for each other: a love that is reflected in justice, equality, and action. It is through working as ONE to end extreme poverty and preventable disease that I can look at the needs in the world and become part of a real solution. As a person of faith, I am convinced that raising a voice on behalf of the poor is how faith creates action and charity leads to justice. ONE provides actions that allow concern for the poor to lead to real change.”
Pastor Matt also recently joined me in Washington and met with ONE staff. He made some remarks regarding the experience:
I recently had an opportunity that I wish could be shared with every ONE volunteer. During a visit to Washington D.C., I was able to spend a morning at the ONE U.S. offices and see first-hand the energy, expertise and effort behind ONE’s work on behalf of the world’s poorest people. I was invited to participate in the daily “morning huddle” led by Mike Henry, ONE’s Senior Director of U.S. Field Operations. Listening to the conversation, it was clear to me that the team’s passion to end extreme poverty and preventable disease was matched by their proficiency and talent for advocacy. After huddling as a team, everyone went immediately and energetically into their part of ONE’s work. I also had the chance to meet ONE’s U.S. Executive Director Sheila Nix and ONE’s President and CEO, David Lane. Both were very grateful for the work of ONE volunteers across the U.S. and around the world.
By visiting ONE and interacting with the staff and leaders, I have learned how to be a more effective advocate myself. I know more about the issues ONE is committed to. I have discovered new ways to communicate ONE’s important message. I am also energized by the passion of ONE’s staff and find great encouragement in knowing that so many talented and committed people stand with me as I stand with the world’s poorest people.
If you are a ONE member, I encourage you to connect with your partners on the ONE staff. And if you can make it to Capitol Hill to do some ONE advocacy, be sure to schedule a visit to the ONE offices. It is tremendously rewarding to witness what happens on a daily basis as ONE goes to work on behalf of the world’s poorest people.
It has been an inspirational pleasure to stand side by side with Pastor Matt advocating for the world’s most vulnerable people!