Week-long Call-in for Health Care Reform Begins

Believers across America will be participating in a week-long call-in to congress to lobby for health care reform.

Sponsored by the National Council of Churches (NCC) U.S.A and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Faith Initiative, the effort, which began on Jan. 25, will focus on reminding government officials of the moral imperatives tied to health care legislation, which has reached a stalematein its passage through the Senate.

"Over the past year, millions of Americans have joined together in witness to the desperate need of children and families for affordable health care. After decades of work, and a historic grassroots effort this year, advocates for national health care reform have come further than ever before toward enduring and meaningful change," said a statement released by the NCC.

"In this partisan climate people of faith and others of goodwill join together to remind Congress of the moral imperative of insuring that none of our brothers or sisters are left sick or dying due to insufficient access to quality, affordable to health care."

Democrats are now trying to push health care legislation through the Senate via a reconciliation process that will allow them to win the vote by a simple majority rather than 60 votes. Democrats lost the 60th seat in the Senate when Republican Scott Brown was elected in Massachusetts in place of the late Ted Kennedy.

Brown's victory has been hailed as a sign that Americans are dissatisfied with the way the government has handled the health care bill, and that they are demanding change.

The NCC said that passage of a "meaningful health care" bill would be a "testament done in faith and love" for the government.

"As Christians we believe in a kingdom of God, in which we each will live in fellowship and solidarity with others, and embody the healing ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ. We know that God will someday deliver us to this kingdom, and in gratitude for that promised act we work to embody its likeness in this moment."

It is with this spirit, the group said, that Americans need to contact their congressmen and "urge them to act with courage and mercy by enacting health care legislation now," reminding them that "families are still struggling to access and afford health care."

"As people of faith and their constituents, we still need and expect reform," they said.

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