By Angie Norris
Mount Pleasant Christian Church recently distributed more than $1 million in one weekend through a campaign designed to help families in need.
“Change for a Dollar” has been in place since July of 2015, aiding a total of 250 individuals or families from its inception. Senior Pastor Chris Philbeck started the offering after noticing other churches around
the country were adopting the idea as well. Participating churches pick weekend services to ask the congregation to donate an additional dollar for each person in their household during the weekly offering. The extra donation amount is saved in a special fund specifically for individuals and families to help them meet specific needs.
Mount Pleasant Christian Church generates an average of $3,500 in additional funding for people in need. The Change For a Dollar initiative at Mount Pleasant allows anyone, from anywhere to nominate someone who may benefit from financial and prayer support. Recipients are nominated and their needs are assessed by a committee within the church. The church works to pay their bills or pay for services directly. “I love Change for a Dollar for many reasons, but the biggest one is it gives our church
family a simple, yet tangible way to be generous and live out the instruction of Jesus to love our neighbor every single week.” said Philbeck. “Change for a Dollar helps us move people from just going to church
to being the church.”
Much of the funding has gone to pay mortgages, medical and other bills. Over the years, many of the recipients had money left over after all of their needs were met. With the additional money that
had accumulated through Change for a Dollar, Mount Pleasant has been able to help wipe out $7 million in medical debt for Greenwood residents and others living in areas the church serves. Medical debt
is such a large problem that Mount Pleasant leaders started looking into a way to help those pay off their debts. Their search led to a nonprofit organization called RIP Medical Debt, which collects donations,
then uses that money to purchase large amounts of medical debt for much less than individuals owe and then forgive it. Those whose medical debt is forgiven are completely freed from that burden.
A $70,000 donation from Mount Pleasant will abolish at least $7 million in local medical debt. More than $3.5 million will be going to pay for the entirety of medical debt that RIP Medical holds in the city of Greenwood. The remaining money will go toward medical debt found in the three zip codes of IMPACT Campuses located in central Indiana.
Some former recipients of Change for a Dollar funds were in attendance, sharing how the congregation’s gift helped them. Mount Pleasant Christian Church looks forward to its next milestone to reach and
surpass, as Change For A Dollar continues to grow. Johnette Cruz, PR coordinator for MPCC said, “Since the new CDC guidelines came out, we are currently streaming all services for every weekend, but we are still doing Change for a Dollar. We love serving the community!”
For more information about how Change For a Dollar works, please go to mpcc.info/changeforadollar.