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Marcella's Kitchen hosts opening day, serves up warm meals with a side of love

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Marcella's new temporary location at the Draffenville Lion's Club Community BuildingDRAFFENVILLE - Marcella Perkins has the heart of a servant. And today, her many gestures of good will and dream of offering blessings to others came to fruition as the doors of Marcella’s Kitchen, “Serving with Love and Loving to Serve,” opened wide to the community.
More than a dozen volunteers turned out at 8 a.m., working to prepare food for the masses. At 11 a.m., they lined the doorway of the kitchen’s temporary location being staged at the Lion’s Club Community Building off of Griggstown Road, in Draffenville. They welcomed the hungry with open arms and the smell of fresh-baked bread. A large cake donned the kitchen’s familiar bright yellow logo, featuring a stewing kettle with hearts floating gingerly above.
Volunteers eagerly awaited the opportunity to serve the kitchen’s firstpatron as she made her way through the front door. Lids and foil coverings were cheerfully removed revealing mounds of fresh pasta alongside steaming hot marinara sauce and meatballs.
Volunteers passed lunch trays, one to the next, serving up a healthy Volunteers serve up lunch for the kitchen's first patronportion of food along with loving smiles and good cheer. At the end of the day, 44 were served, including volunteers, and while the building was not overflowing, the day was considered to be a tremendous success.
“We have to build up the community’s trust first,” Perkins said. “We are chartering uncharted ground here in Marshall County,” adding the factt hat Paducah’s Community Kitchen saw no visitors on its first day open.
Perkins said in time, residents will come to trust those who are there to serve and understand they are always welcome, no questions asked.
Standing over the cake as she began to cut the pieces, one could see the pride in Perkins’ eyes.Despite all of the effort and personal sacrifice she has put forth, Perkins is always the first to give the credit away. Today she thanked the hundreds of supporters, volunteers and her family for helping her make the kitchen a reality. And as always, Perkins thanks God for the miracle he has performed.
“I am amazed at what God has done,” she always humbly states. “I cannot express how much it means to me to see what He has done in such a short amount of time - to God be the glory.” Those words seems to continually take on new form and meaning every time you talk about Marcella’s Kitchen.
Marcella along with daughter Sandra on opening dayWhile all who came managed to make their way to the kitchen this morning, church buses have begun running pick-up routes, which will provide transportation to residents in areas throughout the county.
Ron Pitts is heading up bus ministry efforts and says Calvert City United Methodist will be picking up at their church at 10:30 a.m. and then at Calvert City Apartments at 10:40 a.m. on both Wednesday and Friday mornings.
New Bethel Baptist will be picking up at their church location at noon, then at Walnut Baptist Church at 12:10. The bus will then drive to Walnut Court and will be available to anyone needing transportation. Pickup in this area will be on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week and starting next week, they will pick up Monday through Saturday each day.
A bus from Sharpe Missionary Baptist Church will be making a route beginning at First Baptist in Gilbertsville at 11:25, then at their church location at 11:40. If you are in need of transportation to the kitchen, please contact Ron Pitts at 252-0881.
If you are interested in volunteering at the kitchen, please call GraceForte at 205-0223. If your church would like to participate in the busministry, please call Ron Pitts at 252-0881, or simply add your contact information on the wall of the group’s Facebook page. Marcella’s Kitchen is located at 242 Griggstown Rd. in Draffenville and is open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
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