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Church clears medical debt for over 3,000 Wabash Valley residents

The debt was cleared thanks in part to funds from Bethany Christian Church.

Posted: Sep 24, 2019 6:24 PM
Updated: Sep 24, 2019 6:30 PM

WASHINGTON, Ind. (WTHI) - Bethany Christian church has been in Daviess county since 1830.
For the local parish giving back to the community is a big part of their mission.
At Bethany Christian, that mission is called "dollar difference."

Lead pastor Matt Merold says, "For every person that attends on a Sunday morning we give a dollar to a general fund. That goes, adds up for the month, and is handed out to someone in our community."

Those funds are meant for folks in the community who need it. However, this month's funding went to a whole lot of people in the area.

The church was able to raise $15,000. Now they worked with an organization called RIP Medical Debt. This not for profit buys up medical debt for pennies on the dollar. That's how the church was able to take $15,000 and turn it into four million dollars in forgiven medical debt.

Merold says, "Originally we actually thought we were going to be able to pay off 1.3 million, they came back and they were able to negotiate with a few more other counties and I think health companies and we were able to get six counties total."

That's 3,227 families whose medical debt has been completely wiped away.

Merold says, "We know it's right and it's at the core of who we are to give ourselves and to give our things away to others and to help other people. And we weren't called to be greedy we were called to give. We weren't called to consume we were called to contribute. It feels good to do that."

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