Organizers say their fundraiser barbecue has raised more than $50,000 for the families of those killed in a mass shooting at a Texas church.
Mike Ritch, a chef who co-founded Smokin’ Angels BBQ Ministry after Hurricane Harvey battered the Texas coast, said Sunday that the exact tally hadn’t been determined but that it exceeded the group’s $50,000 goal “by some portion.”
He says the group wants to notify the families before announcing the total raised by the weekend event, which was held at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Adkins, about 15 miles (24 kilometers) from Sutherland Springs.
Plates were priced at $10, but Ritch said dozens of people came through the line and paid more for to-go orders. He says all of the money will go directly to the families.
Congregants have departed crying and hugging one another after the first worship service since last week’s mass shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas.
The service Sunday was expected to draw about 500 people. It attracted an overflow crowd to a tent set up a baseball field in the small South Texas town that became the scene of the worst mass shooting in Texas history.
Children also attending began playing on the baseball field as people at a community building are preparing to feed about 350, including families and survivors of the shooting.
Former Pastor Mark Collins says next week’s service will be held at the church site.