A Detroit church’s decision to giveaway gas last month was so successful, the police department had to shut down the charitable event because it quickly became a traffic hazard.
In late September, Second Canaan Missionary Baptist Church announced it would be giving away $15 worth of gasoline to the first 150 people to arrive at a nearby BP station as part of its celebration for the congregation’s 63-year anniversary.
But the giveaway garnered so much attention, police had to shut it down within 30 minutes of its start. Soon after the event began, the line was backed up almost to the highway, according to WJBK-TV.
“People were lined up from, I’d say, starting, like, at 10:30 a.m. and the giveaway started at 1:30 p.m.,” said William Bazzi, a BP employee. “So we both got here around 11 o’clock, and by the time we got here, we could barely make it off the highway.”
Pastor Frank Harris said the intent of the event was to “make an impact” in the community, and the church certainly accomplished its goal.
“Many people think the church is always trying to get from them, but our assignment is to show them that the church is always giving,” he told the local WWJ News Radio.
Second Canaan is not the first church to launch such a kind gesture.
In July, Grand Rapids First, a church in Wyoming, Michigan, paid off a whopping $1.83 million of medical debt for almost 2,000 families. And in April, Pathway Church in Wichita, Kansas, paid off $2.2 million worth of medical bills for 1,600 local families.