SNELLVILLE, Ga. - Praise the Lord and pass the petrol.
The First Baptist Church in Snellville, Ga., is fuelling its membership drive with a sign in front of its sprawling campus proclaiming "Free Gasoline."
There's a catch, of course. The offer is a not a giveaway.
By Greg Bluestein, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Instead, each time newcomers or members attend a church event during a Sunday-to-Wednesday revival they get a pink raffle ticket for a chance to win one of two $500 gas cards.
The church boasts a congregation of about 9,000, but church officials say only about 2,500 regularly attend Sunday services.
"We don't know how far it will go with these soaring (gasoline) prices," said Rusty Newman, the church's senior pastor. "But (winning) it may make someone's night."
The church, like others, has long relied on special dinners and giveaways to draw in members, but elders wanted something a little more timely.
They set up a sign advertising the offer outside the church's parking lot on a busy road near downtown Snellville, a traffic-clogged suburb northeast of Atlanta.
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