Grace's Kitchen - A 'God-Send' to Many
One definition of the word Grace is an act or instance of kindness and courtesy. That could be one of the many descriptions of Grace’s Kitchen, a food ministry of Cedar Bayou Grace UM C. Grace’s Kitchen has been providing a hot meal each Wednesday evening for anyone who walks through the doors. The dinner is served out of the Pruett campus located at
Grace’s Kitchen began approximately 3 ½ years ago, born out of a dream of Curtis Knight, a member of Grace UMC which unified with Cedar Bayou UMC last year. The original intent of the ministry was twofold: 1) to provide a meal to the local needy in the community and 2) to serve church members and provide an opportunity for both to fellowship together.
As it turned out most of the diners are those in need with a sprinkling of church members each week. Curtis and his wife Jane work alongside a group of volunteers that provide the meals each week. When the kitchen first opened, Curtis and Jane had no idea how many people to prepare for. They began with preparing 30 meals, steadily increasing until today they serve on average 120 per week.
An offspring of their ministry is the Galloping Galley. In the beginning when Curtis and Jane didn’t know how many to prepare for, they had leftovers each week. While they were trying to think of a good use for the extra food each week, church members Kathy Littlefield and Becky Armstrong had an idea. They asked if they could deliver food plates to the churches shut-ins. A list was provided to them and an offspring of Grace’s Kitchen was born.
Curtis and Jane have many stories of blessings and hope that have come from the 3 ½ years of ministry. One such story is the story of the family of 10 that has come consistently each week since the first week.. Last Christmas, the kitchen volunteers wanted to do something for the family. Asking the mother what they needed most, the mother replied with tears in her eyes that she needed a bed for her 4-year old. She had been sleeping on the floor. The volunteers, with help from the church, arranged for the little girl to receive a bed.
The stories go on and on. Like the time one cold winter night, Curtis was cleaning up and was the last person in the kitchen area. He heard a knock on the door and it was a woman who called herself a prayer walker. She traveled from place to place depending on prayers to carry her wherever she needed to go. She was cold and hungry. Even though the kitchen was closed, Curtis invited her in to warm up and fixed her a hot meal. When she was fed she asked if she could sleep the night in the entry way to the church.
After he was advised, ‘no’ due to liability issues, Curtis spoke to his wife who was attending choir practice that night. He said, “Honey, would you mind if we had company tonight?” The woman spent the night at their home. The next day she was once again on her journey of prayer.
“We get way more from this ministry than we feel we give out,” say both Curtis and Jane. They are passionate about their work and would like to see it grow and reach more people. They dream of proving basic medical services and ESL classes someday and are always looking for volunteers. If you would like to volunteer or would like more information, please contact the church office at 281-427-4754.