Pastor Asks to Raise Ominous $666 Church Bill, and Gets Waiver Instead
By Rachel Liu, Crossmap On March 13, 2013
A Missouri church received a bill for $666 from the city, and is trying to get rid of the ominous number by offering to pay more.
Brett Toole, pastor of the Crossroads Community Church, did not miss this chance to explain the meaning of "666" in the Bible to Kearney's City Hall officials.
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"…We made the application for the building permit and then we got an e-mail with an attachment saying we received the permit…the bill was attached to the permit and the bill came out to be $666. I thought it was funny. I don't know how everybody else would have reacted," Toole told The Christian Post in an interview.
"The city developer was sending an e-mail to me saying 'sorry about the number. I reworked it two or three times to see if maybe it could be rounded up or down and it came out just exactly 666'," the pastor explained.
"And as he was sending that to me, I was sending one to him saying, 'hey, can we pay an extra dollar and get off that number? We just kind of had a good laugh over it."
Granting Toole's request, the bill was changed to $667.
However, it turned out that a policy in Kearney allows the city to waive building permit fees of churches upon request for waiver - and the church does not have to pay the bill any longer.
"…We were present when the mayor and city leaders waived our bill of $667," Toole told CP. "We were all kind of having fun with it."
In an interview with a local newspaper, he explained the Biblical meaning of 666.
"That's not a good number for anybody but especially for a church. I just told him what the number meant," Toole recalls.
"For me, part of the benefit about this notoriety, I guess, is that it becomes a teaching point. And you can tell people who don't get the joke what the significance of 666 is."