Pope Francis tells us that the love of Christ compels us to travel to the very margins to spread the joy of the Gospel.

What does this mean for Church development professionals, in particular? In a world seemingly short on joy and beauty, our faith offers an abundance of both.

Understanding the richness we have to offer should propel us into the public square!

And in order to step boldly into the public square, we must use the art of public affairs. Here are five ways to approach public affairs with confidence:

1. Become comfortable with political engagement.

Politics is part of our nature as human beings and our duty as Catholics. Political engagement and awareness, in any form, ensures that the Church continues its missionary discipleship without restraint — both in our own communities and across the globe.

2. Work with other Catholic entities.

We’re in this together. Working with other Diocesan Offices, Catholic schools, your state Catholic conference, Catholic Charities, and other entities will help you learn to present and advance the Church’s policy positions.

3. Share your story.

Meet with the community and public leaders and put a face to the Church. Share your story and the stories of those the Catholic Church serves. Public advocacy turns the abstract into reality — real constituents worthy of investment and consideration.

4. Raise more than funds. Raise awareness.

Advocacy raises awareness. De ne, communicate, and advocate for public policies that support our mission in order to achieve the common good.

5. We have each been blessed with our own gifts from God. Use them.

We’re fortunate to have education, the opportunity to travel for and conduct meetings and personal visits, the expansive landscape of social media, and the tradition of letter-writing, op-eds, and the news media. Share the Church’s story — it’s Good News!