Frequently Asked Questions

What plans are in place regarding COVID-19?

A:

Should COVID-19 persist into 2021 we want to assure you that Catholics at the Capitol will not be cancelled. It may need to look different, but you will receive the quality programming, invigorating talks, and the opportunity to make a difference in your community that you have come to expect. Below is an outline of what might happen should we need to alter our programming.

Plan A: Our hope is that the event will take place fully in-person as it has in the past. Rallying together as a community of Minnesota Catholics eager to make a difference in our state is indispensable. We will do what we can to host the event in person, and abide by the necessary protocols should there be any.

Plan B: If there are restrictions on the number of people who can gather, we will move to a hybrid format. Those who registered early will be offered the first space to join us for the in-person event. All others can join us online. We are committed to delivering both the in-person and online formats with excellence so that no one misses out on the quality programming and information throughout the day.

Plan C: If we are unable to meet in person, we are ready to pivot and move Catholics at the Capitol online. While the delivery will look different, the content will remain high quality. The online format will include most components of the current schedule including quality keynotes, instruction on how to engage your legislators, and information from our sponsors. We will strive to set up online district meetings so that everyone has a chance to talk with their legislators and make a difference in our state!

Learn more here.

What is the cost?

A:

Early Bird Pricing: $15 + taxes and fees

  • Lasts until January 31, 2021

Regular Pricing: $20 + taxes and fees

  • Open through March 31, 2020 at 4:00pm

Lunch is not included in ticket price, see here for details. 

What does my ticket include?

A:

Included with your ticket:

  • Continental breakfast
  • A full morning of dynamic speakers, discussion, networking, and prayer at the Cathedral of St. Paul

  • A chance to connect with excellent Catholic companies and exhibitors

  • Training and education about how to talk with your legislator and how you can make a difference in your district and your state

  • Meetings with your legislators to discuss issues that are important to you

  • Opportunities to pray together, including a Eucharistic Procession and prayer in the Capitol Rotunda

  • A whole day of meeting and building relationships with other Catholics from across Minnesota who share your desire to make a difference

What about food?

A:

A light continental breakfast will be served and the cost is included in your registration. 

We have several options for lunch:

  • Food trucks will be available if you want to purchase a warm lunch that day.
  • Pre-purchase a boxed lunch from Green Mill for $10 + taxes and fees. These meals will be available for pick-up onsite (if you want this option, pleas order it at checkout).
    • Turkey sandwich, chips, cookie
    • Ham sandwich, chips, cookie
    • Salad, two types of dressing, cookie
  • If you do not want to spend extra money on lunch, you are welcome to bring your own. 

Who should attend Catholics at the Capitol?

A:

Any Minnesota Catholic who wants to learn how to become more active in politics and make positive change as an advocate for human life and dignity. You don’t need to be a policy wonk, an insider, or a dynamo public speaker to make a difference. Your presence will speak volumes to your elected officials! In state and local politics, the most important thing is to show up.

How can I make it to St. Paul for this event?

A:

Out-state dioceses will sponsor their own transportation to St. Paul on April 15. If you are from an out-state diocese, you should choose that option on your registration form. A diocesan liaison will contact you with details about transportation as the event approaches.

Those near the Twin Cities metro area can take advantage of one of our park-and-ride locations if they so choose. We also recommend carpooling with other attendees from your parish.

For more details, visit our transportation page.

What about parking?

A:

If you plan to drive to St. Paul and park, please indicate this on your registration form. Parking options include the Cathedral of St. Paul parking lot and nearby street parking. Because secure parking is limited, we encourage you to take advantage of one of four free park-and-ride locations. You can also choose to find your own parking in St. Paul. For more details, visit our transportation page.

Is there transportation between the Cathedral and the Capitol?

A:

Yes, but it is limited. There will be a Eucharistic procession from the Cathedral to the Capitol, and we encourage everyone to participate in this if you are able. It is a roughly one-mile walk, and should take about 25 minutes. However, if you are not able to participate, we will offer a shuttle service between the two locations. 

Will we have opportunities to pray together as Catholics?

A:

Yes! Prayer is what strengthens us, and serving Christ is the reason we’re going to the Capitol in the first place. We will offer Mass before the morning programming starts. We will offer a Eucharistic Procession from the Cathedral to the Capitol in the middle of our day. A rosary will be offered in the Rotunda on the half hour during the afternoon. Finally, we will conclude the day with a prayer send-off in the State Capitol rotunda.

Check the schedule for more details!

Is attendance limited?

A:

Yes. Because all six dioceses in Minnesota are involved in promoting this event, we expect to have Catholics from across the state, and we anticipate that tickets will sell quickly. Furthermore, because we need to accommodate people from all 67 Minnesota senate districts to ensure appropriate representation, space in each district is limited.

Register today!

What if I need to cancel my registration?

A:

No refunds will be offered for Catholics at the Capitol 2021 tickets. If, for some reason, you are unable to attend Catholics at the Capitol, you can view your payment as a donation to the Church so we can continue offering transformative events for Catholics across Minnesota.

Cancellation due to inclement weather will not be refunded. Catholics at the Capitol will go on despite inclement weather. 

If you ordered a pre-paid lunch from Green Mill, and you cancel before March 24, 2021, you may receive a refund for the cost of your lunch. 

Describe the program of visits to legislators.

A:

After learning about the issues and effective advocacy, as well as hearing from dynamic Catholic leaders, attendees will head to the State Capitol for legislative visits. Together with other Catholics from their senate districts, attendees will have up to three meetings with legislators: one with their state senator, and two others with the state representatives from their senate district.

I have never talked to legislators before. Does talking to them really make a difference?

A:

Absolutely! Your legislators are elected to serve you, their constituents. It’s their job to find out what your concerns are, and do their best to represent you at the Capitol. You are their most valuable resource because you help them identify the specific challenges that they should be working to address.

Whether or not you’ve spoken to your legislators before, they will be happy to meet you and listen to your concerns. Meeting your lawmakers in person at Catholics at the Capitol is a great way to start building a relationship with them; then, next time you get in touch (for instance, in the middle of the legislative session with a critical vote on a key issue coming up), you won’t be an anonymous voice on the phone—they’ve already met you in person!

What’s more, Catholics at the Capitol will offer programming in the morning that will inform you about the key issues and equip you to influence your lawmakers. Be not afraid. Unless you are a District Leader or feel passionate to speak about one of our advocacy issues, you need not speak during meetings. Your presence alone speaks volumes.

We’ll make sure you have an enjoyable and impactful visit to the Capitol!

How effective is it to speak directly with legislators?

A:

Phone calls and emails to legislators can be effective, but there is nothing more impactful than an in-person visit. Why? Because by making the time to come to St. Paul, you convey to your legislators that you care about the decisions they make on your behalf. This matters to legislators, because you’re the one who puts them in office. Your investment in them and your concern about the issues conveys that you will also vote against them if they don’t make those issues a priority.

Catholics have diverse views on political matters. How can we possibly expect to speak with one voice?

A:

Catholics can have legitimate disagreements about the correct policy to address a particular problem. But we can all be united by our shared commitment to the foundational principles of Catholic Social Teaching: principles such as the preferential option for the poor and vulnerable, the sanctity of human life, the inviolable dignity of the human person, and the responsibility of parents to be the primary educators of their children, to name but a few. Agreeing on policy specifics is less important than sharing a consistent ethic of life and conveying that to our elected officials.

I don’t necessarily agree with the bishops’ policy positions on certain issues. Can I still attend?

A:

Of course! The policy positions of the Minnesota Catholic Conference are prudential applications of Catholic Social Teaching. In offering their perspective, the bishops of Minnesota seek to fulfill their responsibilities as teachers and shepherds caring for both Catholics and all Minnesotans.

In the case of public policy, the bishops propose rather than impose. They hope that Catholics and all people of good will consider their perspective in important policy debates and join their voice in advocacy, but Catholic Social Teaching is meant to be an intellectual framework for all Catholics, to help us discern the will of God in each circumstance. Every Catholic is responsible for prayerfully considering, guided by the Scriptures and the wisdom of the Church, their own position on important policy issues.

You may be struggling with certain positions that MCC proposes, or in some instances, even strongly disagree. Even if there are points of prudential disagreement, we hope that Catholics at the Capitol is still an opportunity for study, reflection, fellowship, and working for the good on issues in which there is agreement.

Will ASL interpreting services be available?

A:

Yes, if requested in advance. We are able to provide ASL interpretation of the speeches, videos, and other conversations that take place during the morning program. To request this service, please contact Maggee Becker at mbecker@mncatholic.org.

Is Catholics at the Capitol a handicap accessible event?

A:

Yes. Both the Cathedral and the Capitol are handicap accessible. If you plan to take the shuttle from the Cathedral to the Capitol in the afternoon, please contact Maggee Becker at mbecker@mncatholic.org as soon as possible. Please also advise us of any special assistance or wheelchair accommodations that will be needed during the event.