Overall, the community felt that Hale was to be their savior. Much of the town had become hysterical over the "condition" of the girls, and Hale had the reputation of saving another community. Reverend Parris feels that by bringing Hale in, he will be seen as a hero. Hale is not a fraud, but he has very naive beliefs in his own ability to cure the situation, and quickly becomes overwhelmed by his inability to help.
Community reaction is mixed. Rebecca Nurse "fears it" John Proctor hopes to impress Hale that there are no witches. Giles Corey asks Hale about Martha's strange reading habits and his own inabilty to pray. Reverend Parris is hoping to be viewed as proactive by bringing Hale into the community. Hale, himsel, is deadly earnest in looking for signs of the devil in Salem.