Our Ministry's Strategy:
Prayer, Preaching, & Providing Pastoral Care
Faith and Action in the Nation’s Capital is America’s premier Christian outreach to top-level government officials in Washington, D.C. We are located directly across from the U.S. Supreme Court, a block from the U.S. Capitol, and 10 minutes from the White House! Our purpose is to affect the hearts and minds of America’s public policy makers with Christ’s mandate in the two Greatest Commandments: Love the Lord Your God with All Your Heart, Soul, Strength, and Mind, and Love Your Neighbor as Yourself.
We believe that narrowly targeting our efforts is the most effective way to carry out our mission—to challenge our nation’s leaders with biblical truth. We are, therefore, focused on “challenging” 2,604 specific individuals across the three branches of government.
First, we aim to minister to the 54 individuals in the federal judicial branch—the Justices of the Supreme Court, their clerks, and assistants.
Second, we reach out to over 50 individuals in the executive branch, including the President and Vice President as well as their staff and closest advisors. We also reach out to the various departments of the executive branch, including Justice, State, and Defense.
Third, we strive to minister to over 2,500 individuals in Congress—Senators and Congressmen as well as their staff and their closest advisors.
Much of our ministry work is conducted behind-the-scenes due to the positions held by those to whom we minister. We are very effective in this type of ministry, but we also have three major programs that constitute our main public ministry each year: Operation Nativity – Live Nativity, the U.S. Capitol Bible Reading Marathon, and Day-Break Prayer at the U.S. Supreme Court. These often serve as conversation-starters and network-builders to further our private ministry.
We recognize the uniqueness of our ministry field, and we daily thank God for the ministry relationships He’s given us with elected and appointed officials at the very highest levels of government. It is not without great expense, both in terms of the financial costs (Washington, DC, is expensive) and the physical toll it takes on our staff. But our team is committed to our calling and works tirelessly to advance the Gospel on Capitol Hill.
Faith and Action in the Nation’s Capital accomplishes its mission through building personal relationships with individuals serving in government, engaging in private and public conversation and debate, distributing Scripture and informative materials, and staging special events such as panel discussions, symposia, news conferences, seminars, and prayer, worship, and preaching services.
We also use the media, the internet, and the pulpit to disseminate our message. Faith and Action believes in and works hard to build strong alliances with like-minded individuals, groups, religious communities, churches, and institutions.
Our core beliefs at Faith and Action in the Nation’s Capital are built upon a timeless witness to Jesus Christ as the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6); attested to in Holy Scripture and lived out through His people. We are a Christian missionary outreach to elected and appointed officials in Washington, DC. Our message begins with the two Greatest Commandments: Love the Lord Your God with All Your Heart, Soul, Strength, and Mind, and Love Your Neighbor as Yourself (Mark 12: 29 – 31).
While Faith and Action may comment on a particular public policy initiative, legislative proposal, or nomination, we do not regularly engage in lobbying and we never endorse candidates for public office. Faith and Action is also non-partisan and treats all people equally, regardless of their political affiliation. We are a non-profit, religious/charitable corporation with an exclusively religious mission. Our programs place a strong emphasis on the public acknowledgement of God, the importance of prayer, evangelization, pastoral care, Christian instruction, and respect for the sanctity and dignity of life, marriage and the family, and religious freedom.
The Ten Commandments Project is an ongoing operation of Faith and Action. Faith and Action’s motto is “bringing the word of God to bear on the hearts and minds of those who make public policy in America.” One of its goals is to “restore the moral foundations of our American culture” through placing Ten Commandments displays in public buildings.
Created in 1995, Faith and Action’s Ten Commandments Project has given over 400 plaques depicting the Ten Commandments to members of Congress and other highly placed officials, including former presidents Clinton and Bush. Special delegations made up of clergy and lay people make the presentations during ceremonies held in the recipients’ offices. The agenda includes a short speech describing religion as the foundational basis of morality and law, a reading of the Commandments in their entirety, and prayers. The official is then given an inscribed wooden plaque on which is mounted two stone polymer tablets containing a summary of the Ten Commandments. Recipients are urged to “display and obey” the Ten Commandments.
Schenck chose to promote the Ten Commandments because he believes that they have a universal and enduring nature and that they are fundamental to morality.
The Honorable William Ostrowski House
The organization itself is headquartered in the Honorable William J. Ostrowski House, named for the retired New York State Supreme Court judge and long-time supporter of the Schenck brothers’ efforts. The 19th Century Victorian Row House sits directly across from East Façade of the U.S. Supreme Court building at 109 2nd Street, NE. A notable feature of the ministry office is a granite sculpture depicting the Ten Commandments displayed in the building’s front garden.
It’s all about location, location, location . . .
So much of the ministry we do in Washington is based on proximity – being physically close to the action as it happens. Just like a church needs to be near the community it seeks to reach with the Gospel, we need to be near those we seek to reach with the truth of God’s Word. Most top-level officials in our federal government are within an easy walk of our front door–not to mention the hundreds of thousands of employees that assist these officials.