After moving to a new home in the Tampa area about six months ago, single mother Candace Petterson started attending the Greater Mount Moriah Primitive Baptist Church. She was excited to find a place to worship God. But her spirit got shaken when she received a troubling letter last week from the church.
Petterson said she received a delinquency notice from her new church asking her to contribute $50 a month, along with other assorted fees, to remain a member in good standing and vote on church matters, ABC News reports.
“In order to not be removed from the church roll, your attention to this matter is greatly appreciated,” the letter says. They also offered to grant her a 90-day “hardship” exemption becasue she was a new member.
The church, which is predominantly black, and has operated for more than a century, asked her to pay a yearly $250 anniversary fee and another $150 for Mount Moriah Day – amounting to $1,000, some of which would be set aside to pay off church debt.
Petterson responded by posting a copy of the letter on the church’s Facebook page, where it has sparked a passionate debate by commenters.
According to the report, Church officials acknowledged they sent the notice to Petterson, but they declined to offer additional comments or explanation.
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