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Texas Congregations Call for Faithful Action with Health Justice Sabbath
Our first annual Health Justice Sabbath weekend was a huge success! People of faith across Texas gathered to pray, study, and take action to support health care for all Texans.
The weekend began with a press conference in Austin, featuring faith leaders and a struggling young Texan who refuses to give up hopes of coverage and care. Representative Donna Howard thanked faith communities for their engagement and pledged to support legislative efforts to increase access to health care.
About 100 congregations around the state participated in the Nov. 18-20 event. They hosted blood drives and health fairs, lead discussion groups and participatory panels, offered prayers and liturgies about caring for the sick, and equipped their communities to engage in health justice advocacy.
- At South Hills Christian Church, Fort Worth, a group of health care professionals led the congregation in prayer at both services lifting up gratitude for providers, the need for expanded coverage, and hopes for legislators. The congregation collected signatures for our Interfaith Coverage Solutions letter.
- First United Methodist Church, Sinton, heard from their Wesley Nurse, Kerry DuBose. Pastor Rosie Grattan said, "We have a church that is becoming more and more impacted by health-related concerns in our midst, and therefore, we are deeply committed to extending our knowledge of the need for comprehensive health care for all ages."
- At Christ the King Lutheran Church, Houston, the congregation offered a prayer at all worship services that weekend, and hosted a Justice Advocacy Event after each worship service on Sunday.
- All Saints' Episcopal Church, Austin, invited health professionals in the congregation to stand and be recognized during worship, and honored them in a special liturgy.
- In Weslaco, the First Baptist Church and First United Methodist Church partnered to organize a blood drive, collecting nearly 50 units.
- Emerson Unitarian Universalist Church, Houston, screened the film, Fix It: Healthcare at the Tipping Point. Attendees participated in an "above politics" discussion focused on solutions, drawing from the film's reasonable and simple approaches to a problem often characterized as overly complex and unsolvable.
- Congregation Agudas Achim, Austin, hosted Elizabeth Colvin of Foundation Communities to speak about community health needs during worship.
- At Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church, Huntsville, Texas Impact staff conducted health advocacy training.
- MacArthur Park Lutheran Church, San Antonio, lifted up health in prayers and preaching.
Health Justice Sabbath is not just a weekend event -- the need for health care for all Texans is critical, and communities of faith are on the front lines, as pastors, providers and advocates. Health care is a basic human need that must be #AbovePolitics!
Take action for health care today:
Sign our Interfaith Statement on Coverage Expansion asking Texas lawmakers to support a healthcare solution to ensure that health coverage is available to every Texan. Read the letter here or sign today.
More congregations are hosting Health Justice Sabbath events in early 2017. See upcoming events around the state, or find materials and register to host your own event.
Excited and wondering what to do next? Turn your excitement into action during the 85th Texas Legislature!
Texas Impact is providing you and your congregation with opportunities to get involved with the 2017 Texas Legislative Session. Keep the momentum going: take action today in preparation for the 85th Texas Legislature next spring!
- Attend our Service of Public Witness in Austin on January 10, or host a prayer meetup with your congregation or faith group. Gather together in community to pray, discuss the issues, and learn about resources to help you prepare for the Legislative Session.
- Participate in Weekly Witness: come to the Capitol on Mondays during the legislative session to get an update on current issues and visit key legislators. Join us, and make plans to bring a group!
- Join the Texas Impact Rapid Response Team, a dedicated group of advocates who commit to be available on short notice to contact their legislators. A timely response from a trusted constituent can make the difference, so consider this opportunity to make a special impact!