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Christian Assembly Church gave thousands of Los Angeles area families a much welcomed Christmas gift last year. The church mailed letters to households about their intention to pay off their medical debts.

Co-lead pastor Tom Hughes, announced in a video the church is ready to pay off $5.3 million worth of medical debt of low-income individuals and families in more than 25 neighborhoods.

“Because of the generosity of Christian Assembly Church, we are able to give a Christmas gift to the people of Los Angeles, no strings attached.”

Take a look…

Hughes added,

“We’ve worked with the nonprofit organization, RIP Medical Debt.

We’ve learned that in these 28 neighborhoods, there is $5.3 million worth of outstanding medical debt that is owed by people who earn less than twice the federal poverty line.”

According to ABC7,  the Christian Assembly Church had collected about $50,000 in the past year.

The collection started the idea that families living with medical debt would benefit the most if the money was used to pay it.

The Christian Assembly Church, working with RIP Medical Debt, also plans to aid with repairing credit scores damaged from crippling debt.

Each person will receive a letter letting them know their medical debt has been cleared by an act of generosity from the Christian Assembly Church.

Plus, RIP medical debt will then work with the credit unions to repair the credit damage from the medical debt thereby lifting the credit score of each person.

As they recover from their illness, the improved score will make it easier for them to get a job, get an apartment, and help them get back on their feet.

And avoid homelessness.

In the U.S., 41 percent of working-age Americans—or 72 million people—have medical bill problems or are paying off medical debt, up from 34 percent in 2005.

Accumulating debt because of the high costs of heath care can lead families to file for bankruptcy or deplete retirement savings–difficult decisions to make in the face of a medical crisis.

What do you think about this move? Should more churches be doing this?

Let us know in the comments!