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Church Rejects $600,000 Donation from Lottery Winner

11:00 AM, Aug 14, 2008   |    comments
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And he offered to drop his tithe, around $600,000, in the collection plate of First Baptist Orange Park.

But the church and Pastor David Tarkington politely declined and told Powell they will not accept the lottery winnings.

Many churches do not approve of the lottery and gambling but on the other hand Pastor Dr. Lorenzo Hall of the El-Beth-El Divine Holiness Church says $600,000 can do a lot of good.
 
"I'm against the lottery, but if one of my members won the lottery, I wish and I hope he would give 10% to the church, we could do a lot of things with that money," says Hall.

As a Holiness minister, Dr. Hall says he does not ask where members get the money they decide to donate.

He said he would welcome Powell's donation to his inner city church anytime.

"We are in the process now of building a youth center, and you would be surprised at the people that can be helped with $600,000," says Hall.

Bethel Baptist Church member Lottie Walker says if she won, the first thing she would do is give lottery money to her church.

"Anything extra is bonus so that would be an extra blessing of offering after that, so if I did win lotto, sweepstakes I would tithe to my church," says Walker.

First Baptist Orange Park Pastor David Tarkington would not say exactly why the church refused the money, saying only he didn't want to talk about members' gifts.

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