Sept. 2013 town hall forum: The Affordable Care Act (ACA) and You

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How will the Affordable Care Act (ACA) affect you?

Listen to the replay of our Sept. 24, 2013 online audio town hall event: "The Affordable Care Act and You"!

To listen, simply click the triangular "play" button on the audio player near the top of this page.

On Sept. 24, over 2300 computers, tablets, and phones tuned in during this live event,from Alaska and Hawaii to Montana to Maine and everywhere in between. In many cases, branch church congregations and other groups listened together.

These listeners learned about how they can prepare for Jan. 1 and what options currently exist for Christian Scientists, found the answers to their questions, and heard inspiring remarks from Margaret Rogers of the Christian Science Board of Directors.

To listen to the replay, simply click the triangular "play" button on the audio player near the top of this page.

You can also listen to the excerpt of Margaret Rogers's metaphysical remarks alone.

Panelists included:

  Kevin Ness, General Counsel, The First Church of Christ, Scientist—moderator
Steve Northrup
Steve Northrup, a government relations expert with over 20 years of experience working with Congress and in the health care field
Gary Jones
Gary Jones, Manager of the Committee on Publication's U.S. Federal Office
  Melanie D'Evelyn, Federal Legislative Director, U.S. Federal Office
Tessa Frost large
Tessa Frost, Strategic Relations Manager, U.S. Federal Office
Margaret Rogers
Margaret Rogers, member of the Christian Science Board of Directors—closing remarks


"...the government shall be upon his shoulder..."

(Isaiah 9:6)

"Divine Love always has met and always will meet every human need."

(Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures)


  1. Please address what, if any, type of health care insurance will be required for those of us who are on social security as their prime source of income.

  2. Wonderful! I have been working with "the government shall be upon his shoulder" on a number of things going on with this administration.

  3. I am a life-long CS and have no insurance other than SCS Insurance. I am 79 years old. What should I expect from Obamacare? What will I have to pay?

  4. Is it true that I need to sign up for Medicare (at least Part A) at least 3 months ahead of age 65, which is shortly before the Jan. 1, 2014, ACA requirement -- even if I decide to delay social security benefits until full retirement age? Also, to have coverage for Christian Science nursing in a C.S. Care facility beyond 60 days, and to have coverage for a C.S. practitioner, do I need a Medigap private insurance policy -- and is signing up for Medicare Part B a prerequisite for that option?

  5. I have no health insurance. I have opted out of social security health insurance. What place do I find myself in Obamcare?

  6. I currently do not have health insurance coverage, choosing "radical reliance", and would like to know what I will be required to carry under this Act and where to look to get insurance that will cover Christian Science treatment. Also, what will be the penalty for not having insurance? Finally, from your insight, how does it look for an exemption being included in the Act for Christian Scientists? Thank you!

  7. What are the ramifications of not buying any health insurance -- of being a conscientious objector? Our family has no intentions of buying insurance against our will that we'll never need/use. Are we continuing to work to get exemptions as other groups have?

  8. What insurance provider is offered to employees at The Mother Church? Could that be made available to all TMC members?

  9. 1) if I have Medicare part A (not part B) will I be required to purchase insurance?

  10. God is our government; God is our life.

    Before we reach this absolute understanding, Mary Baker Eddy told us to look for examples of Jesus, his disciples and the Prophets before them from the Bible.

    I cannot picture them taking their patients' present history and past history (human history/drama) before healing anybody. At the present time, it would be like Christian Science Practitioners, complying with the ACA's requirement of taking and keeping records of their patients, including diagnosis and treatment.

    Furthermore, I also cannot picture God's men having insurance in case that God won't heal them, neither. It would be like us, Christian Scientists, complying with the ACA to have insurance that the government approves.

    The whole thing will put us back in bondage like pharaohs' time.

    We should either join the afford to repeal the ACA or get exemptions.

    How likely is it that we will get exemptions or even repeal?

    Thank you very much for your hard work. May God guide you as always.

  11. What happens if I do not buy health insurance in the first six month's? I understand there will be a penalty that increases each year. However, it appears that it will be cheaper for me to take the penalty for the first two years. Will I be able to buy insurance before the third year through the exchanges or are they only open from Oct. 1 2023 to March 1, 2014?

  12. The Obama care act which has the insurance companies regulating us, is this not what dangers judge
    Brandeis wrote about in "The Right to Privacy"? The book speaks on the right to liberty, property, and our First Amendment rights besides other issues this new law will effect.
    This new law, to me, will make me subjected to forced care and labeling, of which other dangers are described on the net, as "making the profile fit". Can you tell me that it does not?
    A Nazi Germany medical authority type of law, is it not? (for those who never went through the same experiences with the medical and insurance)
    The servicemen use to be subjected to what was called "corporeal punishment" which entailed, if one did something wrong, everyone was subjected to it. Is it not something akin to that?

  13. I've been a practitioner for many years. Early on, I opted for the vow of poverty which means I haven't paid in to Social Security. Does this affect either my medicare at age 65 or my ability to opt out of health insurance and pay the penalty for a couple of years before I hit that age?

  14. The ACA is, to me, who am a Christian Scientist, like the application of the Golden Rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." In a democracy we work for the general welfare, not just our own. I am entitled to Social Security payments and Medicare Part A by law. ACA should not affect those already having Medicare Part A, since they are already covered. But it will help many others for whom I have no better way of helping at this time.

  15. Thank you for helping us understand how we will be impacted by this new law. I see it as similar to other ways that my tax dollars help the citizenry in general. For example, those who don't have children still pay a significant price to educate the children in the neighborhood. I may choose not to use the benefits of this new law, but I believe it is a reasonable expectation of the populus, and I should be willing to do my part to support it. Hopefully, the new law will quell fears for some people and may even reduce the cost of health care. It's certainly cheaper in many countries where they've had something similar for years. I believe the U.S. is among the few countries in the world without such a plan -- not to mention the only First World country not to help its citizens in this way.

  16. Will I need a "proof" card that I don't need to purchase insurance ?

  17. Radical reliance on Truth is not the same as radical defiance of government. An early teacher of Christian Science was known for saying, "your goat is your most important animal , so you don't want to let anyone get it." Jesus minimized obstruction and obstacles by knowing true power........he told us to be in the world but not of it and to be not afraid.

  18. It should be made clear that the ACA (aka Obamacare) does not affect anybody over age 65 and/or enrolled in Part B. Medicare Part A, Part B, Medicare Supplement and Long Term Care insurance are products that this age group should look into having. The ACA affects those UNDER age 65.

  19. I am retiring in November and have Part A. I have been a lifelong CS. What type of insurance is available for CS which include the cost for a CS sanatorium for either short or long term care? Woud Part B cover any costs of a CS sanatorium? Does the type of insurance available for CS care satisfy the Obama care requirement?

  20. I have been a practicing Christian Scientist for over 80 years I have never had medical insurance nor needed it. I am told that I automatically have medicare if I get social security. I never have signed up for that is that true

  21. I am not old enough for Medicare. I plan to pay the penalty until then. Where can I find out how much the penalty will be?

  22. Confirming that retired military on SSC Part A & B, can use TRICARE as their insurance program without having to pay a penalty in taxes,

  23. I don't think that a democracy can be defined as "work for the general welfare" -- that is volunteerism and charity (which I support).

  24. Has the Webcast started? I am not hearing or getting anything...

  25. If you are having trouble tuning in, try re-loading your webpage

  26. My husband is retired military, and we are both retired Defense Department Government employees. Under our "government" healthcare option, that we specifically chose, covers Practitioners, Nurses or Christian Science Nursing facilities. Will that also now change?

  27. I have tried to resart the Web and nothing works. Hopfully I will be able to hear the replay or maybe TMC will have a written version of the Webcast in pdf format that can be downloaded.

  28. What will the penalty be for not taking the insurance. Is it a percentage of your income?

  29. It says up at the top of the page that there will be a recording on this same web page for people who weren't able to listen live.

  30. Are there any insurance policies that include CS care that meet the ACA requirement?
    If we already have both Medicare A&B coverage do we need more?

  31. Does Medicare qualify us for having insurance now? Are we required to purchase supplementary insurance also?

  32. The government has this web-site which explains what to do and how much the tax penalty would be ( 1% of your income, or $95 whatever is greater).

  33. Official information on

  34. IIf I have Social Security with Medicare A (hospital) but not Medicare B, will I be required to sign up for B? Or a private plan?

  35. This is not legimate tax or forcing American's to buy anything. Not constitutional.

  36. did you say that the IRS does not have the authority to prosecute those who do not pay the penalty?

  37. Where can we send financial contributions to support the COP?

  38. You go guys and gala. Thank you!

  39. Where is orange box for subscribing to newsleter?

  40. The newsletter sign up is found on on the right hand side of the page. You may need to scroll down a little bit on the page to see it.

  41. Enlightening, informative and I'm so grateful for the good work you are doing!

  42. So grateful for all your work!! Thanks for all the info....
    More prayer to do.... I'm with you/us.

  43. I do not carry medical insurance because I see it as tithing to a church I'm not a member of. ACA to me is like being forced into a government mandated church. If there was ever a clearer case of an imposition on public thought, it is the notion that people must have this law to find health.

  44. This was very helpful -- Thank You ALL for your commitment to this important activity!!!

  45. Thank you for this helpful information, and for all the good work you have been doing to find accomodations for Christian Scientists under the ACA. I appreciated the thought that we work not just to see that Christian Science health care is recognized for us to use but that Christian Science is available to all. The tone of this meeting was very loving, inclusive and uplifting with the metaphysical foundation for our prayers and practical actions.

  46. On another note, thank you for all your efforts, legislative and metaphysical, on behalf of Christian Scientists, as well as everyone else.

  47. Very grateful that everyone in Washington D.C. is soooooo
    dedicated in working with our congressional and senate
    leaders & to see that the Christian Scientists will be given
    the exempt status that is deserving for everyone who relies
    on the One great God--our true Physican! Thank You! JMC
    And, THANKS to all who are praying throughout the US with re-
    gard to our religious freedom.

  48. Thank you so much for these inspired closing thoughts!!! Many, many, thanks!!!!

  49. Thank you all for bringing a good focus on the ACA regarding Christian Science care.

  50. Thank you for the informative and lovingly delivered meeting. I'm so grateful and proud to be a Christian Scientist and to be a member of a church that is based on the foundation that "God is Love"; even a difficult and touchy subject is handled with integrity and love. Thank you!

  51. Thanks so much for this informative session; it was completed with consideration and love. Thank you also for ending the meeting with the wonderful treatment from Margaret Rogers. I am changing my perspective on this government as of right now, "seeing in Science a perfect (Congress)".

  52. You guys are awesome, thank you so much!!

  53. Just listened. Thanks so much.
    God Is blessing these loving Christian efforts. God is purifying our motives and guiding everyone all the way.

    God bless you all.

  54. I would appreciate updates please. Thank you ever so much for all your work.. Will continue to pray.

  55. BIG THANKS to you ALL for offering this hillside for 2000 plus, free men to rally;)

    Peace, patience, clarity, joy, humility, gratitude, love and honor of God and humanity flowed freely as bless ed balm each moment;)))

    THANK YOU for all your efforts, inviting everyone in and seeing the open door, GORGEOUS, MAJESTIC, ABUNDANT CHURCH!!! XXOOO

  56. This was such an interesting program. I have not followed any of this before and so it is a wake up call for me to pay attention and get educated to make choices for myself. Thank you for this stream talk and I hope there will be others.

  57. This was a very informative meeting. Thanks to all for continuing the challenging work. I loved the idea expressed that Mary Baker Eddy introduced Universal Healthcare to the world, and we know it as Christian Science - The Divine Principle of healing all mankind! Thanks again for your due diligence!

  58. Thank you so much for making it easy to get online for this terrific talk. It was informative, interesting, and loving!

  59. Wonderfully illuminating! One big, happy family united in the glorious cause of understanding the intact healthcare of mankind. Gratiude abounds for the dear team of CSCOPs in the U.S., & throughout the world as they work so diligently to ensure the correct interpretation of the Science of Christ, Christian Science.

  60. Thank you all for the enlightening, clarifying and inspiring town hall meeting! Four of us listened in our Reading Room. I especially appreciate how you are demonstrating the Committee's Manual mandate, "correcting in a Christian manner..." Your Christian manner shone through and I remember also thinking that after the previous town hall meeting.I appreciate, too, Margaret Roger helping us to see that protection of the practice of CS and the desire for universal health care are not mutually exclusive but its actually evidence of the of the Science of the Christ leavening human thought. Thanks, too, for the work of the Federal Office over the years.

  61. Thank you for all the good work with all stakeholders and audiences. The approach, both spiritual and practical, to this landmark legislation has broad application. I loved the practical, informative, participatory design of the forum and the contributions of all panelists. The beginning music readied thought. The field work and work on Capitol Hill was palpable. I am so very thankful to be better equipped to think and act regarding this subject and ongoing process. With much love to all who are working together for good outcome.

  62. Deeply grateful for all that has been and is being done on our behalf...actually, on behalf of all mankind!

    Thank you so much.

  63. Thank you for having this enlightening presentation. All speakers showed evidence of prayerful preparation as very important and frequent steps in this journey. While it also demonstrated the dedication and resolve of the Board of Directors and the Federal Office over many years to provide the right technical and practical solutions for Christian Scientists, the ending remarks by Margaret Rogers captured the true meaning of the changes from a Christian Science perspective. Her treatment spoke for all mankind, and pointed listeners toward embracing more than just ourselves in our thoughts and prayerful work.

    After following the entire recording above, its is worth going back to the 71:00 mark to listen again to Mrs. Rogers' loving and healing presentation of how we all should be viewing the challenges at hand.

  64. Thanks for this informative broadcast. Gratitude for the resources shared and for the countless hours you've put into building bridges for us.

  65. Thank you so much for the helpful and informative ideas. What a blessing to everyone!

  66. Thanks to listening to the program yesterday, I found out that a Health Savings Account can be used for Christian Science treatment by a practitioner, which I had never realized. My employer offers health insurance with this option and I look forward to using it. Thank you for this practical information as well as the inspiration I gained from the discussion and Margaret's closing remarks.

  67. I am so glad I took the time to listen. This was so helpful in answering questions about the ACA and its good to know so much is being done toward practical solutions for Christian Scientists. Thank you so much.

  68. I've been trying to keep up with the progress on this via the periodic updates, which are very helpful. I really liked having it all brought into focus through the panel, partly because it enabled us to listen together at our branch. I felt strength in unison, and refreshment for my prayers: Divine Love always has ...and always will...(meet the need of understanding true health through God's care.)

  69. Thank you for making this available on download for my IPod. I can listen to it outside while working on our farm.

  70. Thank you so much for once again giving my concerns a place of peace. I now know how I was letting fear take hold and just listening to the most to the proactive and motivating thoughts on the progress that will allow Christian Scientists an exemption from acquiring medical insurance is priceless . As usual, you once again have turned my thoughts from fear to trust. Trust in what has been my supply and life since day one!
    Thank you.

  71. It's dear to recall Christ Jesus words when awakened from sleep by the disciples who were so concerned
    about the threateningly raging stormy seas, "Peace, be still" !