Georgia Pastor Surprises Pregnant Waffle House Waitress with More Than $12,000 in Donations
A chance encounter with a preacher and a $40 tip has led to a new life for one Waffle House waitress in Georgia. But, if you ask Bishop Eusebio Phelps, meeting Hannah Hill was “appointed, ordained, and predestined.”
It all began when Phelps, the pastor at New Faith Christian Church, went in to pick up an all-star special with bacon from a Waffle House in Stockbridge.
"She was so nice over the telephone, and when I got there I paid for my food and I told her to keep the change," Phelps told WXIA-TV of his first interaction with Hill.
"And then when I looked at her, I asked if she was pregnant—she said yes so at that time I was just really urged to give her the rest of the money that I had in my wallet, which was around $40,” he recalled. “And so, I gave her the $40 and I told her that I just wanted to be able to bless her so she could buy something for the baby."
Phelps asked her how far along she was, and she told him that she was seven-and-a-half months with her second child. She had already given the unborn baby boy a name: Samuel.
For Phelps, it seemed like a sign from above.
"Well we lost our son Samuel seven year ago in Atlanta," he explained to WXIA-TV. "It's coming up on the anniversary. I went home, I told my wife what happened... my wife and I were talking, I was like, 'listen I wanna raise a thousand dollars to give to Hannah so she can buy whatever she needs for the baby.'"
That night Phelps shared Hill’s story on Facebook, and when he woke up, he had already surpassed his $1,000 goal.
Within about a day, supporters raised more than $12,000.
"So, we threw a surprise baby shower at Waffle House," Phelps said. "It was just an epic moment."
For Hill, who has been staying with her mom apart from her child's father because they couldn't find a place to stay, the money is life changing.
"I had a lot going on, and I don't really pray that often—I'm not necessarily that religious, I wasn't really raised in the church, don't go to church a lot, haven't cracked open a Bible in forever. But lately I have been praying," she told WXIA-TV. "I've been really stressing lately... I've been worried about the baby getting here... I'm so grateful and that's all I can say. I'm so grateful and appreciative to everybody, God is good all the time."
The amazing thing, Hill added, was that she never told Phelps or anyone about her struggles.
"God knew. He felt it on his heart," she noted.
"You gotta show the love of God to people you come into contact with, and it was her kindness —she was so kind and so pleasant, she's just a real sweetheart," Phelps told the local news station. "And that touched my heart. And I feel like the Lord has really allowed our paths to cross."
This week, Hill used the money to buy her first car. She plans to use the rest to find a place to live with her child's father and their roommate. The church has also pledged to helping her with childcare for a year.
“We are so appreciative of the kind gesture made by Bishop Phelps and all of the others who contributed on behalf of our Associate, Hannah Hill,” a Waffle House representative told Fox News. “Their acts of generosity are a testament to the fact that kindness and hospitality are two of the greatest gifts that can be given to others. On behalf of Waffle House, we sincerely want to thank all of you.”
Phelps said if anyone wants to provide additional support, they can donate on Cashapp to the church account at $newfaithatl or on the New Faith Christian Church account on Giftify.