This Uber driver puts his passengers on the highway to heaven.
Ordained minister Kenneth Drayton has turned his 2009 Mercury Grand Marquis into a veritable church-on-wheels, transforming his car into a divine vehicle for himself and his passengers.
“The job lets me open the door into my passenger’s lives,” said Drayton, 54, who said his Brooklyn trips often turn into therapy sessions. “The hope is to brighten their day and give them advice.”
The religious experience happens the moment a passenger plops down in the backseat, Drayton said.
“I only play classical music, my car is immaculately clean and they can sense the presence of God,” he said, adding that passengers are immersed in “peace and tranquility.”
Passengers quickly get into the confessional spirit.
“That’s when people start to open up,” said Drayton, who preaches at Staten Island’s Christian Word of Hope Ministries. “And where the listening skills come in.”
One woman talked to the Flatbush holy man about her missing son during a ride from Canarsie to downtown Brooklyn last April.
“Her boy had been missing for five days and she was just trying to make it through,” said the married father of four. “I told her, ‘Though we don’t have control over a situation, you have to exercise your faith and patience.’”
Another man dished on his financial woes and how he was on the verge of losing his carpet-cleaning business.
“He was in the black, but suddenly went into the red after another carpet-cleaning company opened up nearby,” said Drayton, who was ferrying the man from Brooklyn Heights to Linden, N.J., last November. “All I could tell him was to get involved with the ministry and learn God’s way of doing things.”
“Experiences like that really keep me going,” said Drayton.
The roving preacher — who began driving for Uber last August — said his counsel was especially in high demand after the presidential election.
“A lot of people were feeling discontent,” he said.
About 10 of his passengers received the same advice: “You can’t dwell on the past.”
The rides-with-benefits have also beefed up the pastor’s profits.
He said he receives handsome tips, and recently broke 1,000 5-star ratings on the app. Overall, his rating is 4.8, he said. The top score is five.
“I believe your good work — and rides — speak for themselves.”
“All my comments are ‘excellent person,’ ‘great guy,’ ‘great conversation’ and ‘inspiring,’” said Drayton, beaming with pride.
But not everyone feels blessed to ride with him.
“Some people are rude and no matter what I do or say it doesn’t do any good,” said the minister, who was ordained in 1986.
That’s okay too, said Drayton.
“I believe your good work — and rides — speak for themselves,” he said.
Uber also celebrates Drayton’s gift of gab.
“Driver-partners like Kenneth are the magic behind the app,” said Uber spokesman Alix Anfang.
Source: New York Post
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