MARIETTA - Christmas Day was full of all kinds of food flying from pantry shelves, toys tucked into bags, disheveled clothing racks and happy, smiling faces.
The Gospel Mission Food Pantry in Harmar saw many thankful people during a cold Christmas morning.
"It makes it very special," said Candy Waite, pantry director, about being open on Christmas. "I've waited since November 2009 for when I could spend the day with my blessed Lord and savior. I couldn't ask for more."
Photo by Amanda Nicholson
Ashley Brooks, 20, of Marietta, browses the clothing racks at the Gospel Mission food pantry on Wednesday.
As of 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, the food pantry had seen only 10 people, but they were thankful and smiling. Waite said there would probably be the same amount of people as every Wednesday.
"It is a slow start," she said, adding that the food in the pantry was provided by "God through a blessed community."
Ashley Brooks, 20, of Marietta, said she is a regular food pantry client.
"It's a good thing because it helps a lot of people that need stuff," Brooks said. "If people need something, if they didn't get presents, they can come here and take toys home. I think it's a good place."
Chet Hasley, 41, of Marietta, decided to come out for the day and volunteer to help those in need.
"It's to try to do something nice for people," Hasley said. "To try to give back. Helping anybody at anytime is a good thing. That's how the good Lord designed it... At some point in everybody's life everybody needs help."
Hasley added that during the hard financial times many are facing, sometimes the thing that makes a big difference in their lives is somebody helping and watching out for them.
Sisters Debra and Della Congrove have been helping the food pantry for a long time. For several years, they have been passing out presents to children.
"It feels really good," Debra said, adding, "I hope (the food pantry) gets a lot of people today."
Nicole Morrow, 36, of Marietta, was at the pantry with her daughter, picking up food and toys.
"I come every week, faithfully," Morrow said. "I hope it stays around for a long time to come and that (Waite) helps many more families."
Jeff Waite, Candy's husband, said the pantry offers a lot of food for thought.
"Here you have to have a lot of faith," Waite said. "This is doing what the Bible says to do. The reason we celebrate (Christmas) is, it's the greatest giving of a gift there could be and we try to do the same thing."
Volunteer Debi Miller said it's the reason for the season.
"The little things really are the big things," she said. "Start today and spread some hope and joy. You never know, you may just be someone's Christmas angel."