More than 100 religious leaders meet to debate healthcareby Stephanie Hemphill, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — More than 100 religious leaders from the Twin Cities and St. Cloud are meeting today with business leaders to talk about health care.
The sponsor of the gathering is ISAIAH, a coalition of congregations working on social justice issues.
ISAIAH president Grant Stevensen, is pastor of St. Matthews Lutheran Church in St. Paul. He said ministers are hearing a lot about the health care crisis.
"I can tell you my congregation is in pain over this, the people who own businesses in my congregation and the families that have no insurance or that are under-insured," Stevenson said.
Stevensen said it will take uncommon alliances, such as religious and business groups, talking to each other to agree on how to fix the broken U.S. health care system.
"I'm really convinced that tinkering with a broken system is not the way forward," Stevenson said. "And although we're not coming into this conversation with a set plan or agenda about what it should look like, we're aware that around world there are actually many different models, and we need to have the kind of coalition that could make that conversation happen."
Stevensen says ISAIAH already has alliances with labor and medical groups, so it's in a good position to get everyone to the table.
He expects today's meeting to lead to ongoing discussions aimed at influencing federal health policy.