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How to Contact Your Members of Congress

Faith and Action
United Methodist Women has always believed that faith and action go hand in hand. Scripture tells us: So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead. (James 2:17) As women in mission, we have worked against slavery, against sweat shops and child labor. We have promoted racial justice and world peace. Today we continue to contact our legislators on issues impacting women, children and their families. In so doing, we make our faith live. And we make a difference.

How to Write

  • Keep your letter brief. Address only one issue in each letter. Begin your letter by stating what action you hope your legislator will take (“I urge you to support the Act for Better Child Care.”) Type or write neatly and include your return address in your letter; envelopes are thrown away. Note: E-mail messages are not as effective as personalized, handwritten letters.
  • Be polite. Legislators are human. Always state your concerns courteously. If possible, thank your legislator for some action she or he has taken that you support.
  • Share your concerns as a person of faith. Identify yourself as a member of United Methodist Women. Tell why you believe a bill should be supported or opposed. Share positions of the United Methodist Church on the issue by sending copies of General Conference resolutions with your letter.
  • Share your experiences. If you write about the needs of the aged, share your needs or those of aged family members. If you write about children, share your concerns about the children you know.
  • Write on a timely basis. Your letter is important anytime, but it will have the most impact if it is received when a vote is about to be taken.

The Honorable ___________________________________________________ 

U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Ms./Mr.____________________________________________________

The Honorable ___________________________________________________

U.S. Senate
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Senator_____________________________________________________

How to Telephone

  • When to telephone

          When lead-time on action is limited, phone calls are an effective way to register your concern.

  • Where to telephone

          Washington: The Capitol switchboard is 202-224-3121. Ask the operator to connect you with your legislator.
          Local Office: Every member of Congress has a local office. Find this information online, in your local newspaper or phonebook.

  • What to say

          Give your name and town. When calling Washington, ask for the legislative aide who deals with the issue of concern to you. Identify yourself as a member of United Methodist Women and share your concerns. Be brief. Mention the bill number or title of the legislation and ask your legislator to support or oppose the bill.

Making a difference on legislative matters takes patience and persistence. People of faith must continue their efforts, possibly even over a period of years, before a bill becomes law.


© 2014 United Methodist Women