A conference about justice? It might ignite your passion

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-14-Ill.) talk about hunger with Bread for the World during at the Justice Conference last year. Jared Noetzel/Bread for the World.

By Jared Noetzel

The Justice Conference means a lot to me. Three years ago, I trekked across a few states to attend the conference in Philadelphia, Pa. Packed into a van with 12 other Wheaton College students, I had starry-eyed dreams about what justice meant.

Little did I know the Lord had a plan for my life. It just needed a petition – a petition to end hunger, that is.

I had never heard of Bread for the World when I walked down the aisle of the exhibit hall at the conference and ran into people who are now my Bread co-workers. What started as a short conversation has turned into a passion. I’ve been working at Bread for three years now, and it’s all because of the Justice Conference.

As advocates for an end to hunger, we know a thing or two about justice. Bread staff attend the conference each year to share our passion for ending hunger — and to encourage bold action around the issue.

Last year, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-14-Ill.) joined us to talk about hunger overseas. Every year, the Justice Conference brings together an impressive array of speakers, including Bread’s good friend, Rev. Traci Blackmon.

The realities of injustice and poverty are always changing. Bread works hard to stay current on the issues, but we need the expertise of other leaders and thinkers too. If you care about fighting against injustice in the U.S., consider joining us at the Justice Conference on June 3 and 4 in Chicago.

This year’s theme is Let Justice Roll, from Amos 5:24. Speakers will address and provide insight to issues of race, poverty, violence, the refugee crisis, systemic injustice, and shalom.

Bread staff will host a pre-conference track focused on child poverty on June 3. You can use the code BREADPre to register and get a discount.

As Christians, we believe that all children should have access to the resources, opportunities, and hope they need to thrive and fulfill their God-given potential. Unfortunately, even though the U.S. is often described as the land of opportunity, 16 million of our nation’s children — one in five — live in poverty.

Attendees of the child poverty discussion will learn theological foundations for advocacy, experience briefings and panel discussions on child poverty from national experts, network together, and strategize practical tools for action. Justice-seekers from all sectors – local pastors, nonprofit and business leaders, students, academics, government officials, and others – are encouraged to participate.

We’d love to have you join us for the entire weekend as we learn and act together for an end to hunger.

Jared Noetzel is a project coordinator in the church relations department at Bread for the World.

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