Dr. Dan DeShong, the retired owner of a regional chiropractic clinic who was troubled by our nation’s moral decay and wanted to do something about it, searched the internet for answers and found the Capitol Ministries website.
After reading about our ministries and becoming excited about our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ in the political arena throughout the world, Dr. DeShong contacted Capitol Ministries.
He decided to become involved in CivicReach®, CM’s ministry to partner with neighborhood churches to take the Gospel to local elected and appointed leaders in the city halls and county governments of America.
And recently, Dr. DeShong was named CM’s Director of CivicReach® for greater Sacramento, CA.
He has already held a CivicReach® recruitment conference to find other committed Christians who want to establish Bible teaching, evangelistic, discipleship ministries to political leaders in their local governments, and he has begun working with the new volunteers.
“Get involved!” Dr. DeShong challenged others across America. “Shouldn’t the church influence government with the Gospel? CivicReach® is a perfect way to begin reaching our local officials.”
“Capitol Ministries has already done all the work,” Dr. DeShong said. “Everything is on their website. In the same week, I can teach the same Bible studies that are being taught to our nation’s leaders in D.C.! This really empowers me and my ministry!
“Everyone recognizes the moral decay we are in and we have a perfect solution with Christ!”
“Anyone who wants to make a difference should know that they can influence up-and-coming political leaders by teaching them the Word of God which will help them form a Christian world view in their hearts.”
While some may feel going into the halls of government to make disciples of Jesus Christ is a violation of the separation of Church and State, they are mistaken, said Ralph Drollinger, President and Founder of Capitol Ministries, who has extensively researched and written on the issue.
“God has made the Church and the State institutionally separate, but not influentially separate,” Drollinger said at the CivicReach® recruitment meeting at River City Christian Church on December 17.
“Most religious right leaders do not understand that — they say we have to have a Christian nation and I say what do you specifically mean by that? Be careful about that. Old Testament Israel is theocratic, the United States is not.
“In forming CivicReach® ministries in local government, we are in no way suggesting America should become a theocratic nation. Capitol Ministries and CivicReach® leaders wholeheartedly believe in institutional separation, but not influential separation.”
“Biblically, the roles of the two institutions are vastly different. The State was created to punish evildoers and the Church was designed by God to manufacture righteous disciples that the State is dependent upon for its existence. Without them, it will implode.”
Bonnie Gore, Vice Mayor of Roseville, CA, was among speakers to the 25 people who attended the CivicReach® recruitment meeting.
“I want to tell you that as elected leaders, we need you,” Vice Mayor Gore said. “If you come along side elected leaders, their hearts will change. We have seen that.”
“City Councils, school boards, county governments are the farm teams,” she said. “From there, elected officials move up to higher office. If you get their hearts now, later the nation will feel that influence.
“Change our hearts and we will lead well.”
Drollinger said he believes the U.S. is full of men like Dr. DeShong, who wish to be solutions — in the sense of what the Bible describes is the solution — to the problems they see in our nation, and that Capitol Ministries would like to hear from them.
“Think what our nation will become if the Lord raises up 19 more men like Dr. DeShong in our largest city conglomerates!” Drollinger said. “We would be pinpointedly reaching for Christ the leaders in local government, because that is where most of our future state and national leaders come from!”
In media terms, the 20 largest populated conglomerates of cities are known as ADI’s, or Areas of Dominant Influence, and they comprise more than 70 percent of our nation’s population, Drollinger explained. Sacramento is the 19th largest conglomerate of populated cities in the United States.
“Dan and the team that God is raising up, have a passion for building model ministries in the surrounding Civic Governments of Sacramento — and then helping to fan and expand that vision nationwide.”
After his initial meeting with the Capitol Ministries team, Dr. DeShong talked to the leadership at his church, River City Christian, a 100-year-old church with 2,000 members.
“They wholeheartedly supported becoming involved because Capitol Ministries and its CivicReach® ministry is not about politics,” he said. “It is about sharing Christ with our government leaders and appointed officials. It is consistent with our mission to reach all people of Sacramento for Christ, where Religious Right political activism is not.”
“This is a perfect outreach for us.”
Display boards that DeShong crafted that presented pictures and titles of elected officials in six local municipalities were exhibited at the meeting. They were used to encourage people to adopt their local government board. Since the meeting 10 men have stepped forward to become involved and DeShong and Capitol Ministries are in the process of training them.
Dr. DeShong will also visit churches in Sacramento neighborhoods and recruit lay leaders or pastors who wish to take the Word of God to Public Servants to their local government leaders.
CM created CivicReach® specifically to form partnerships with local churches to create discipleship ministries in the 33,000 incorporated city and county governments across the United States, where few outposts for Christ are found.
Dr. DeShong finds the national vision a daunting, yet exciting opportunity.
“I have been lying awake nights thinking what is going to happen if this works,” Dr. DeShong said. “But we will do it one step at a time. We will create an exemplar and then go on to the next city and then the next and the next.”
The Capitol Ministries team asks that supporters and partners join us in praying for this ministry to local elected officials.
Those in the Sacramento area who are interested in working with Dr. DeShong to create discipleship ministries may contact him at: [email protected]