Religious leaders: Sequestration decision will impact congregant - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Religious leaders: Sequestration decision will impact congregants

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Rabbi Elizabeth Bahar said she had been keeping her eye on what is going on in Washington. Rabbi Elizabeth Bahar said she had been keeping her eye on what is going on in Washington.
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HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

Concerned members of a local clergy put their concerns about sequestration to paper in a letter to lawmakers. They say the sequestration problem will impact everyone in one way or another, including their congregations.  

Rabbi Elizabeth Bahar said she had been keeping her eye on what is going on in Washington. 

"I realized that through discussion with my congregants that this is going to directly impact their lives and thereby the community which I serve," she said.

So the Rabbi began to write.  She contacted other members of the Southeast Clergy Association so they could share the concerns they are hearing from their congregants. 

"Some of them are fearful that they will lose their jobs but most of them will be affected by the furlough," she said. 

The letter has eight signatures of spiritual leaders of different faith. 

Minister Dr. Rick Owen, with Trinity United Methodist Church in Huntsville, is one of those eight signatures.     

"Our community is hurting and this letter is simply an expression," he said. "This letter says we are hurting, please, listen. Please, hear us. We have people who worry they won't be able to fill their obligation to their church that they want to fulfill, but more importantly, they are afraid they can't fill their obligation to their families." 

Both spiritual leaders said the government's inability to reach a decision could impact what money comes in on days of worship. 

"I think it will affect us," said Rabbi Bahar. "I've already had a congregant come to me that the donations that they make regularly will decrease." 

Minister Owen said he is preparing a sermon for Sunday morning to give his congregation hope while we wait for lawmakers to reach a decision.

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