Elected officials are people too.
That became real to Pastor Randy Dignan, when he recently visited Missouri congressmen in Washington D.C.
Approaching the Capitol building, he said he was reminded of the "awesomeness" of the place of history and where decisions are made.
But when he met with U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth, and U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo, he heard everyday problems and interests.
"Our goal was to help the office," Dignan said. "What I learned from this day was they're human beings just like we are."
Dignan joined more than 170 independent Baptist pastors for this first-time event, "The Capitol Connection," which they hope to repeat annually.
Their mission was simple and non-political.
Each of the 535 representatives and senators received a reprint of the 1782 Aitken Bible, at the request of the House and Senate ethics committees.
Philadelphia printer Robert Aitken was sanctioned to produce the first complete King James Bible in America.
Just as that first Bible was approved just after the Revolution, Dignan noted that today's financial and social problems could benefit from the same.
The pastors met with officials from their regions for a time of prayer and bringing words of encouragement.
"It was an honor to meet with Pastor Randy Dignan during his trip to Washington," Luetkemeyer said. "His day-to-day mission of bringing the message of peace and hope to those throughout Jefferson City is humbling and I hope his ministry continues to be an important voice in our community."
Most of the officials were impressed the pastors did not want anything from them but instead were offering prayer for them.
"They were all overwhelmed and shocked when we said: "We're here to do something for you,'" Dignan said.
Dignan's congregation at Bible Baptist Church supported his participation. But their enthusiasm increased when he reported on his experience.
Church members, including youth and women's groups, will organize to send letters more frequently to the officials.
"They want to hear from their constituents," Dignan said.