A Lisburn man has praised the generosity of a fellow customer, who covered his grocery bill after his bank card was declined unexpectedly.
A kind-hearted stranger has proven that kindness still exists after she covered a fellow customer’s bill at a County Antrim supermarket.
The Lisburn man, who wishes to remain anonymous, spoke to Northern Ireland World about the act of generosity he experienced at his local Sainsbury’s on Monday, 22 August.
“It was such a lovely gesture and so well appreciated,” he said, explaining that the kind stranger simply asked that he pay it forward.
Kindness is contagious‒ passing on the kind act
The Lisburn man, who tragically lost his wife last year, was shopping at Sainsbury’s Sprucefield on Monday evening. However, when he got to the checkout to pay for his groceries, he was surprised when his card was declined.
Due to a banking mix-up, after a bank worker had mistakenly blocked his card, his payment wouldn’t go through. Shocked, the man asked the checkout operator to hold the groceries while he went home to get cash to pay the £83 bill.
He explained, “I got to the top of the queue, all of my shopping had been scanned through, I got my bank card out, and it was refused.
“I asked the woman at the till to please put the ice cream back in the freezer. I promised that I would nip home and be back in 45 minutes with cash to pay.”
A kind act ‒ doing something for others
However, the man was saved a journey as a kind-hearted stranger, standing at the back of the queue, offered to cover her fellow customer’s bill.
The man told Northern Ireland World, “There were three people in the queue, and the woman at the back stepped up and said, “I’ll pay for this.”
“It was such a lovely gesture and so well appreciated,” he explained. “So rather than holding up the queue discussing it, I accepted her kind offer, and she told me to simply pass on the kindness.”
Paying it forward ‒ giving it to those who need it most
The Lisburn man then waited outside the shop to thank the lady for covering his bill. Asking if he could pay back her kind act, she simply told him to “pay it forward”.
Astounded by the kind-hearted stranger’s generosity in covering a fellow customer’s bill, the man took her up on her request.
Upon returning home, he decided that he wouldn’t pay for someone’s groceries, who could probably already afford it. Instead, he would pass the kind act to those who need it most.
He phoned Leslie Patterson, Minister of Cregagh Presbyterian Church, to ask if he knew of anyone who was struggling. He said, “I asked whether there were any families struggling to make ends meet so I could return this kind woman’s generosity.
“It was then that Leslie suggested Ballynahinch Food Bank as they are appealing for donations and food. I rounded off the total to £100, wrote a cheque and asked Lesley to ensure the Food Bank receives it.”