Kingdom Life Ministries gives back

Published 11:22 am Monday, April 18, 2011

Plaza Sunoco cashier Erica Evans changes the gasoline prices at the Armory Drive station on Saturday. Kingdom Life Ministries offered 25 cent discounts on gas for two hours. GWEN ALBERS/TIDEWATER NEWS

FRANKLIN—Javon Blunt experienced three new things Saturday.

It was the first time a church helped pay to fill up his car. And it was the first time someone pumped his gas and cleaned his windshield.

“Speechless,” is all the 21-year-old from Courtland could say while at the Plaza Sunoco at Armory Drive and North College Avenue in Franklin, where Kingdom of Life Ministries for two hours offered a 25 cent discount on gasoline.

“This has never happened to me in my life,” Blunt said.

A senior computer engineering major at Virginia State University, he saved $1.75 after topping off his tank with seven gallons of gas.

Members from the Franklin church pumped 1,971 gallons of gas into 193 vehicles between noon and 2 p.m., said the Rev. Matt Kidd, pastor for Kingdom of Life Ministries. The church’s bill to Plaza Sunoco was just under $500.

Kindom of Life Ministries member Amanda Ritter of Franklin washes a customer's window. GWEN ALBERS/TIDEWATER NEWS

“In light of the economy locally, we wanted to give back with really no strings attached,” Kidd said.

The church began planning the event five months ago, when gas was less than $3 a gallon.

Paulette Lawrence arrived about 30 minutes early and ended up running out of gas in the parking lot. Two men pushed her car to the pumps before the discount period began.

“I heard about it and thought it was a good thing to do,” said Lawrence, who usually spends $35 to fill up her tank.

Bea Tubbs of Hunterdale was among the first to have her car filled.

“I saw the ad in the paper,” Tubbs said.

She saved about $2.50 by filling up her Nissan Altima, which was half empty.

“I think it’s a beautiful thing to do,” Tubbs said about the church’s offer. “I think that’s what churches should do.”