Family brings new soup kitchen to Indian Head
A local Waldorf family is on their own mission to help end hunger and homelessness in Charles County, one hot meal at a time.
Arline Arnold and Clarence Arnold, founders of The Arnold House, will open The Arnold House Soup Kitchen at Metropolitan United Methodist Church in Indian Head on April 27. The soup kitchen will be open every Wednesday, as part of a growing movement in Charles County to feed and provide hot meals to those in need.
The Arnold House is a local grassroots organization dedicated to raising awareness of hunger and homelessness in Southern Maryland. The Arnold Family founded The Arnold House in Sept. 2015. Every Sunday, the Arnolds, as well as their dedicated volunteers, cook hot meals at their home in Waldorf and serve it in to-go boxes to the camps of people living in the wooded areas all over Charles County.
“I didn’t grow up fortunate and my grandmother always believed that food is the cure for all things,” Arline said. “I refuse to allow hunger and homelessness to be an epidemic in our county when we are all so blessed, so The Arnold House is joining forces with members of the community to put an end to hunger in the county.”
Arline and her husband, Clarence, who is also a board member at local soup kitchen Our Place Waldorf at Good Shepherd United Methodist Church in Waldorf, have made it their mission to fight hunger in Southern Maryland by partnering with public and private organizations, local businesses, and churches within the community.
On April 6, a meeting was held at Metropolitan United Methodist Church in Indian Head to make plans for the opening of The Arnold House Soup Kitchen to serve the Indian Head and nearby communities.
Metropolitan United Methodist Church Mission’s Ministry Chair Sheila Myers, and the Rev. George E. Hackey Jr. said they have been trying to create effective ways for their church to assist the homeless and the opportunity to work with The Arnold House couldn’t have come at a better time.
“We are just so amazed at what Arline can do without any government funding and with mainly the support of the community and people who have found out about her organization on Facebook,” Myers said. “Arline shows others that helping the homeless is something we should be doing, not just as disciples of Christ, but as a community as a whole.”
The Arnold House Soup Kitchen in Indian Head plans to feed 60-80 people every Wednesday night from 5 to 8 p.m. with a meal, dessert, and food bags for people to take food with them when they leave.
Hackey said the Metropolitan UMC refers to Arline as, “the Mother Theresa of the homeless in Charles County,” because of her passion to help the homeless seven days a week.
“Matthew 25 says we are supposed to feed the hungry and clothe the naked and take care of those who are sick, so it’s important that the church go beyond the church walls,” Hackey said. “I believe that with word of mouth as well as Arline and her volunteers being remarkable at what they do, then we can expand to having a soup kitchen at different churches each day of the week.”
The Arnold Family is currently seeking volunteers who are just as passionate about ending hunger in the community. For more information about how to partner, sponsor or join the cause, email firstname.lastname@example.org.