By Erica Garrett
On Saturday, July 16, Pastor Donald E. Garrett Jr. and New Life Missionary Baptist Church hosted “Relief at the Pump,” a gas card giveaway through the New Life Community Foundation. The church members were able to give away over 200, $25 gas cards to anyone who drove in front of New Life Missionary Baptist Church.
In the midst of soaring gas prices in June, Pastor Garrett was given the vision to bless the community during this crisis.
Through the New Life Community Foundation, the congregation began raising funds to support the vent. Many thanks to United Way of Greater Cincinnati as a supporter of he church’s outreach ministry work; who responded swiftly to their request to with funding for this event. United Way expressed their excitement surrounding the outreach, saying, “The United Way of Greater Cincinnati is always excited to support our non-traditional partners like New Life Missionary Baptist Church, as you provide unique outreach ministry support to those individuals that need us the most.”
Thanks to other donors to the New Life Community Foundation, includingFirst Baptist Church of West College Hill, Pastor Charles King; Second Baptist, Pastor Roy Rogers; and Allen Chapel AME Church, Emma Barnes; and residents of the West Steel suburb of College Hill.
Although this was a New Life Community Foundation event, Pastor Garrett said he thought it was important to share his vision with churches specific to the church’s community so that they too could be aware and donate if they were able. We are grateful for all of our volunteers who came together to make this all possible.
Pastor Garrett had these words to share about the condition of the Black church, “There is much to say about the condition of the Black church. There are some bad reviews and yet some good. In so many ways, churches have become conditioned to helping within and taking care of their own, yet God has called us to have compassion and help those less fortunate. We the New Life Community Foundation and New Life Missionary Baptist Church want to be the trend setters for change. Uplifting, helping, restoring and making a difference in the lives of our community and neighboring communities is our goal. This is one of many things we will do to help our fellow brothers and sisters the way Christ would do. Making disciples and spreading the Gospel is our top priority, but since God has been so good, there are other ways that we can help and meet the needs of our community. Thanks to all of our partners for believing in the New Life Community Foundation for helping with their presence and donations and making a difference, one person at a time.”
The New Life Community Foundation was able to raise $6,000 for the “Relief at the Pump” event. Not only were individuals being blessed, but in addition some small business owners were able to drive by and receive a gas card as well.
“When we were nearing the end of our giveaway, the lines began to expand going both ways on Simpson Ave. It hurt to turn so many people away, but we were fortunate enough to do what we could during this time. Although this event was word of mouth to the community, word traveled quickly and we were met with many people stopping by New Life, hours after we had to end. This shows the need that was present in our community,” said Erica Garrett, one of the event organizers.
“Several recipients shared their testimony of how much it meant to receive such a blessing from the community. Many of our volunteers were so blessed to be a part and shared their heartfelt gratitude to be able to give back.’’