Rev. Cynthia Hale to participate in Obama Webcast

Several faith leaders, including the Rev. Cynthia L. Hale, senior pastor of Ray of Hope Christian Church in Decatur, participated in a Webcast call-in with President Barack Obama on health care reform Wednesday at 5 p.m.

The call-in, billed as “40 Minutes for Health Care Reform”, allowed leaders from the Protestant, Evangelical, Jewish, Catholic and Muslim faiths to talk about ways their ministries are serving the community’s health care needs and share their thoughts about reform.

Obama has used the congressional break to press home his message about the need to overhaul the U.S health care system. The issue has inflamed passions on each side. Several town hall meetings across the country have been disrupted by people opposed to the president’s plan.

Kristin Williams, a spokeswoman for Washington, D.C.-based Faith in Public Life, a resource and strategy center for the religious community, said the call is open to the public and streamed live on the internet. The conference call will allow time for questions and answers with senior White House staffers.

“This is a galvanizing moment for the faith community on health care reform,” she said. “We want to be part of the rallying call. Across every faith tradition, people believe the current system is broken and people are falling through the cracks.”

Williams said listeners will learn about ways to join a grassroots effort to make health care more accessible and affordable.