Church's money giveaway: Alsip pastor's cash prizes fill pews

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Revmitchell, Nov 3, 2009.

  1. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    At Lighthouse Church of All Nations in Alsip, the congregation can get more than just prayer at the Sunday worship services.

    If a lucky -- or "blessed and highly favored" -- churchgoer is in the right seat, they can also receive a cash prize.

    At each of the three Sunday services, the Rev. Dan Willis pulls a number of one seat from a bag and the worshiper in that seat wins a cash prize. Two of the churchgoers win $250 and the third gets $500. The church gives away $1,000 each Sunday, Willis said.

    The cash prize is part of Willis' recent focus on helping his congregation pay bills and begin a debt-free life, he said.

    "We've had soooo many of our people displaced from jobs, facing foreclosure," he said. "When people's faith was high, their debt was down. When their faith was down, their debt was high. I realized the two are connected."

    Willis concedes the cash prize is a gimmick to fill the pews. But he's unapologetic about the plan, because it's working. On a typical Sunday, his church draws about 1,600 people to its three Sunday services. But since the money giveaway started, about five weeks ago, the congregation has grown to about 2,500 each week, he said. The money for the giveaway comes from the church offering. Lighthouse is a non-denominational church.

    "If I can get someone in here and teach them and give them money, that's what I'm going to do," he said.


    More Here
     
  2. saturneptune

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    That is prety bad. Using a game of chance to attract people to your church is about as low as it gets. If they as a local church truly want to help members who have lost jobs, and they can afford to spend $1000 per week, why not just choose a different needy family to help each week. This is nothing but a marketing gimmick.

    He could save lots of money by just putting up a sign that says "Free Beer" and could get just as many to attend. Nothing like a kegger on the church lawn after worship. They are about on the same level, which is akin to things like the thread on clown communion.
     
  3. Johnv

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    It's rather unorthodox, and I don't like the idea of it being in a church, but hey, Jesus used food to interact with sinners, so whatever floats the guy's boat. I don't think I'd be comfortable at such a church, though.
     
    #3 Johnv, Nov 3, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2009
  4. Revmitchell

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    Since this is not an anti-Obama thread and I posted it you surely do not want to post in it. ......that would make your earlier claim wrong
     
  5. Johnv

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    ?? Okay now you're just being infantile.
     
  6. Revmitchell

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    Actually it makes the point that you made a false accusation against me and it needs correcting.
     
  7. Johnv

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    I think we have a rule against crossposting. You should probably discuss that in the thread you're referring to.
     
  8. Tom Butler

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    I expect that criticism of this marketing gimmick will be met with the answer, "well, it's working."

    I just hope the pastor remembers that what he uses to get 'em there will have to continue to keep 'em there. We'll see what happens when the church decides to discontinue the promotion.
     
  9. Johnv

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    I think you hit the nail on the head. There's a difference between getting people into church and keeping them there. Getting them in is all well and good, but what is being done to keep them there? We can only speculate. As long as his gimmick is being limited to getting people in, and isn't being used to keep them in, then, hey, whatever floats his boat. Again, not the knds of church setting I'd be interesting in, personally.
     
  10. Revmitchell

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    That is exactly right. Maybe we should get them there with the gospel by going into the world rather than putting on shows and lotteries to entertain goats.
     
  11. saturneptune

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    This is where I am differing with some other posters. The method to get them there is outrageous. People attracted to church with a worldly vice has nothing to do with the convicting power of the Holy Spirit. To condone this method to attract then shift gears and figure out a "holy" method to keep them there to me compounds the deception.
     
  12. Amy.G

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    2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;


    Who cares about doctrine?! Show me the money!
     
  13. saturneptune

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    Who needs this?

    [​IMG]



    When you have this.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Tom Butler

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    This is not new stuff, you know. I remember 40 years ago, a lot of bus ministries filled their buses with kids by putting dollar bills under some seats. That, and other goodie giveaways. In one case I read about, there was competition among the bus workers to see who could get the most kids to "pray the prayer."
     
  15. TomVols

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    Makes me wonder what drew the large number in the first place. Did I read right that the congregation grew from 1600 to 2500?
     
  16. Revmitchell

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    "Heaven help us to know the difference between a crowd and a church" Dr. David Allen
     
  17. THEOLDMAN

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    Crowd = Mega-Church ?
     

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