A coalition of progressive religious groups is joining with local pastors nationwide in a grassroots and media campaign to support health care reform. On a conference call hosted by the group Faith in Public Life yesterday, a group of pastors spoke to reporters about their concerns. “We want to remind our members of Congress that health care is about real people, the people in my pews," said Rev. Rayfield Burns, a clergy spokesperson for the PICO National Network of the Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church in Kansas City, Missouri.
As part of the campaign, 586 clergy from 42 states and 38 religious denominations will be preaching on the moral reasons for health care reform in coming weeks and many churches are organizing campaigns to write letters or call their congressmen.
The radio ads, which can be found here, will be playing on Christian and mainstream radio station in swing districts. Radio listeners in Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri and Nebraska will soon hear that "every person, created in the image of God, is of limitless value." Prominent local clergy recorded the ads which are but the latest in a series of efforts to expand the traditional moral compass of the Christian community to include issues such as health care reform and environmental concerns.
Ever since the Rev. Jerry Falwell formed the Moral Majority in the late 1970s, Christian political activism has been associated with the Right. Now, voices on the Left are becoming just as prominent. Of course, it will be left to the pastors of the churches to keep everyone in the pews mindful of the fact that political divisions do not trump the call to Christian unity the Master gave at the Last Supper: Ut Unum Sint.