Sioux Falls City Council Candidate hands out free money thru his church

And we thought it was questionable when one candidate was buying pizza and rounds of mini-golf, or Poops giving secretly negotiated bonuses to city employees. Candidate for At-Large B, Pastor Rich Merkouris’ church is handing out gift cards

Fill out this form, and you will receive a $25 gift card to give to that person.
But that’s just the beginning.

You can request up to $500 to help someone with a specific need. The barrier to receiving money is low. There is some follow-up to check on the details, but the goal is to fulfill as many requests as possible, Merkouris said.

And if you need help, just ask.

The budget for the campaign is $45,000.

Don’t get me wrong, I will commend any non-profit or church that wants to help people in our community, like the weekly food giveaway at the fairgrounds, but this is questionable considering the good pastor is running for city council and these gift cards could appear as a way to buy votes. It seems the crowd that runs with the mayor can only win elections with money.

I sometimes wonder if anybody running for office has any sense of ethics?


#1 Fear & Loathing in Sioux Falls on 02.16.22 at 8:01 pm

What is it that they say: “Just men are sinners?”

#2 D@ily Spin on 02.17.22 at 9:24 am

Confusing Church and State. Makes for a good politician in the city of sin.

#3 D@ily Spin on 02.18.22 at 8:42 am

Pray with believers but prey with city leaders? Bring the Bible but throw out Robert’s Rules? Religion and politics? Really. Worse than pedaphiles on the police force?

#4 Further Fear & Loathing on 02.18.22 at 9:49 am

The people who sit at the front of the church are the ones you need to watch.

#5 anominous on 02.18.22 at 5:41 pm

why not do something like just have the city make its own official church with its own crypto-coins and then pay all the employees with food giveaways and other special patronage arrangements like sports tickets and tokens that would trickle down to the common man to trade at food trucks and getngo for tallcans it would eliminate all this ugly panhandling for cash

#6 Fearing the Fuhrer & More on 02.19.22 at 9:02 pm

Speaking of an official city church, what does it say when a people create religious snowplows, but then there is a winter of no snow? Isn’t that kind of like black Nike tennis shoes and waiting for a UFO to come out of a “comet”?

#7 Blasphemo on 02.22.22 at 12:30 pm

A church distributing collection plate money LOCALLY is commendable. IMO, far too many tax-free status churches suck congregants’ money from the local economy & send it overseas to mitigate 3rd world poverty, when similar problems exist right here in the local community. On the other hand, the timing of this stunt by Merkouris is HIGHLY suspect. It’s typical of this current generation of young, ubercasual pastors who lack the experience & maturity to observe decorum & traditional ethics.