Texas Church Uses Donations to Pay Off $2.6 Million of Medical Debt for Thousands of Families
About 2,400 families will see medical debt wiped from their accounts thanks to Lake Pointe Church's "Pay It Forward" program
Thousands of families in Texas have received a potentially life-changing letter recently that announced their medical debt has been paid in full, all in courtesy of Lake Pointe Church in Dallas.
“We are pleased to inform you that you no longer owe the balance on the debt referenced above to the above provider,” Pastor Josh Howerton said, reading aloud the letter to KDFW. “Our forgiveness of the amount you owe is a no strings attached gift. You no longer have any obligation to pay this debt to anyone at any future time.”
Howerton told the news station that because of many donations from church-goers — which total 12,000 members throughout multiple campuses — Lake Pointe was able to pay nearly $2.7 million in medical debt for nearly 2,400 families in Rockwall and Dallas counties.
The gift will undoubtedly come as a welcome surprise, Howerton explained, since many of them are living below the poverty rate.
“Some of them were people who are making less than two times the federal poverty rate,” he told KDFW. “Some of them were insolvent. That means their debts are greater than their assets. Some of them are veterans.”
When speaking to ABC News, Howerton said the church worked with RIP Medical Debt, an organization that buys medical debt for cheap, only to forgive it. It took $27,000 from the church to erase $2.6 million for the families.
The massive gift comes at the 40th anniversary of the church, and Howerton’s hopes the act helps to inspire more good around the country.
“We just feel like God has been so generous to us,” Howerton told KDFW. “We wanted to take our 40th anniversary to celebrate that in an outpouring of generosity to other people.”
“We want our people to do one act of kindness per day for the next 40 days,” Howerton added to ABC News. “So, if you do the math, that’s 40 days times 12,000 people and half-a-million needs met. That’s the vision we have for this campaign.”