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The following is excerpted from KSL. To read the full article, CLICK HERE.
Latter-day Saint Ryan Baker has been a member of Samaritan Ministries for about two years. Just a few days ago, the Christian health care organization told him he would need to rethink his beliefs or leave.
“As a community of Christians who help other Christians with their health care, our Guidelines require that all adult members are in agreement with Samaritan Ministries’ Statement of Faith in order to be members,” the Illinois-based organization said in an email to Baker.
The organization’s statement of faith is grounded in the Bible, while Latter-day Saints “historically … affirm additional scriptures as authoritative,” the letter continues. Those scriptures, as well as leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, have “denied at least some portion” of the organization’s statement of faith, the letter adds.
Baker, a Utah native now living in Alaska, said when he joined the organization he promised to attend church regularly; abstain from drugs, alcohol and extramarital sex; and abide by other requirements, but he didn’t recall any of his beliefs being contrary to the organization’s — nor did anyone flag his admission application.
“Had I known, I wouldn’t have voluntarily signed up. But we knew a lot of other LDS people who had been in it and never had an issue,” he said.
Samaritan Ministries is a non-profit health care organization that allows members to help each other with medical expenses instead of using traditional health insurance. Each month, the members send their “share” to other members who need to pay for health care. When a member is in need, they can contact the organization and receive help directly from others in the organization.
“They’ve been great,” Baker said. “We feel like we’ve benefited from it, and we say we’ve benefited other people. We’re happy to be a part of it. So we’re a little taken aback by this.”
To read the full article, CLICK HERE.