Pastor Says Heating Oil Stolen from Church as Gas Prices Surge: ‘I Understand the Desperation’

Winter Church and Fresh Snow
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A significant amount of oil for heating was reportedly stolen from a church in Maine as the national average price for gas surges.

According to Rev. Steven Allman of Leeds Community Church, a parishioner noticed Sunday that the fuel container, which can hold approximately 200 gallons, had been drained, McClatchy News reported.

“I know a lot of people are struggling during these times anyway with gas prices skyrocketing and people are panicking a bit,” Allman explained.

“It really would’ve been better for them to ask for help rather than stealing it from us,” he added.

Leeds Community Church shared a photo of the tank and said it was saddened by the incident but praying for those involved.

“If only they would have come to us for their needs,” the post read.

We are very saddened and our prayers go out to those so desperate that they had to resort to draining our outside fuel tank. If only they would have come to us for their needs.

Posted by Leeds Community Church on Sunday, March 6, 2022

The national average price for gas skyrocketed to a record high for the fourth consecutive day Thursday, climbing to $4.318, Breitbart News reported:

Gas prices rose about one dollar before the run-up to the Ukrainian war and subsequently 75 cents since the invasion of Ukraine. But the White House has blamed the massive price hike only on the war, dubbing it “Putin’s price hike.” The White House has also claimed that the oil industry has 9,000 private oil fields on which to drill for oil.

However, Biden shrugged off the steep gas prices Tuesday, not long after promising to do whatever was needed to bring them back down.

“Can’t do much right now,” he claimed when asked about the rising prices. “Russia is responsible.”

Meanwhile, police were told what happened at the church and an Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office deputy is investigating the alleged theft, according to Major Mark Cornelio.

Allman noted the sanctuary was “freezing cold” early Sunday before the parishioner went to check the tank.

“I understand the desperation right now, some people are embarrassed to ask for help,” the pastor commented.

In a social media post on Thursday, Leeds Community Church thanked community members who reached out to help refill the tank.

“I don’t have an official amount that we’ve raised, but I know that several hundred dollars have been donated without the church’s even asking,” the post read.

A huge thank you on behalf of everyone who’s contributed to our effort to refill the church’s fuel tank. I don’t have an…

Posted by Leeds Community Church on Thursday, March 10, 2022

“I keep getting asked if I have a message for whoever took the fuel. That’s a hard question to answer,” it continued.

“Presumably there will be consequences if this person is found. At the same time, we as a church believe in forgiveness. My personal concern right now is that this not happen again,” the post added.


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