RICHARD MARSHALL MARRIED JOE AND I IN 2012. I NORMALLY DO NOT WRITE ARTICLES LIKE THIS, BUT I INTERVIEWED MARSHALL AND HE PROVIDE ME WITH HIS BIO.
Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” -Matthew 19:21
When Reverend Richard J. Marshall II moved to White Springs with his wife and children he had no job or money. Yet he had faith in God and the hope that not only could he rise from the ashes but assist others so that they also could have a better life for all who required his help.
Even with those individuals who continually try to hurt his programs or accuse him falsely, he continues to fight in the name of God for that which he believes in. He never sees differences in race, creed or religions because he, his wonderful wife Sabrina and his family sacrifice all of their time to assist others. He feels a better life for each of you is worth his fighting for.
His first opportunities were found in the Town of White Springs.
In the earlier years Robert Townsend hired Reverend Marshall to work for the Town and he began working under Kenny Hutcherson in Public Works. He then volunteered for the fire department, training as a first responder; later becoming the actual Assistant Fire Chief and then promoted to Fire Chief.
Richard’s calling to serve others was great and with Sabrina’s support, he took a two week leave of absence to assist Hurricane victims. Upon his return it was evident that Robert Townsend wished for his resignation and advised him that if he did not work for the Town of White Springs, he may no longer volunteer for the Fire Department. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed” His love for all people was great and even though he moved on to provide a greater good for those who needed it, he also purchased two dump trucks throughout the years and assisted Hurricane victims until Katrina.
Richard acknowledged, “ I always had a strong conviction for the ministry”. He started working with his pastor in the community and assisted others with their various needs. It was then that he realized he had an opportunity to start a business with his wife Sabrina. They purchased an adult living facility (ALF) in Jennings where they were able to help the homeless, the elderly and the mentally challenged. This is all accomplished by the Marshall’s alone and they receive no assistance. The State of Florida requires adherence to stringent guidelines on ALF’s. Going on their tenth year, the facility has passed all State Inspections. The Marshalls are selfless and the only money received in accordance with state rulings are payments through the Social Security System, sufficient enough to pay the mortgage, provide home cooked meals and care for its people. They have never taken donations except for clothing which Church Groups offer to those in the ALF. To assist others has been a fulfilling reward for the Marshalls.
After several years, Reverend Marshall was elevated to the Assistant Pastor of the Church of God and Pentecostal which made him realize that a food pantry was necessary in our area. He approached the Town of White Springs with a request to start a food pantry in our area and they supported the idea. He then fostered a relationship with the Bread of the Mighty, started a mobile pantry and later qualifying for USDA food which certified our food pantry. “ We have been operating in conjunction with the Town of White Springs for twelve months successfully Our mission statement is to supplement nutrition, fight hunger, and assist in the economic burdens of the households”.
I asked Richard what his average day may consist of. “I am usually up by 6:00 am. I pick up those that need rides to work, under my business Reliable Transport of White Springs. After dropping them off at their place of work, I check my messages to see whether emergency food is needed, schedule appointments throughout the day which are convenient, make deliveries to the elderly from the food pantry, Go to City Hall and check in to see whether something I may assist with anything” (He serves on the White Springs Council)
“Part of my ministry consists of trying to schedule appointments to see anyone in the hospital or shut-in’s who may need my help. During those scheduled visits I pray with them and their families. I also check in on the Adult Living Facility to make sure supplies are not needed; pick up medications, take our adults back and forth to doctor’s appointments. My wife Sabrina buys the supplies once a month at the ADL A nutritionist determines the menus and all food is prepared at the facility”
“Those at the ALF do not have families; Sometimes they are just out of jail or a crisis unit and they have nowhere else to go. DCF (Department of Children and Family Services) requires them to go to the home so that we may give them the dignity they deserve. DCF also has us assist those who have substandard living conditions or need medication and refer them to us or an emergency intervention.”
“Right now I am assisting an individual who is taken to jail on Monday evenings; picked up on Wednesday night and brought home. Then she is picked up from her home and taken to work for five days a week at Sytel; Some go to Pilgrim’s Pride. Others are taken to their probation officers. We have a host of volunteers who are willing to package the food and deliver it to the shut-ins on their own time, and it helps greatly”
Reverend Marshall cut his interview for the blog short because he had to pick up two people at Sytel who were finishing up for the day. With his wife Sabrina at his side and their lovely children, it seems as though there is nothing they would not do for those in need.
“Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him. This is my rule in all the churches. Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called. Were you a slave when called? Do not be concerned about it. (But if you can gain your freedom, avail yourself of the opportunity.) 1 Corinthians 7:17-24.”
There are now those who wish to hurt this wonderful man and his family and take away the programs he has successfully placed. Who are you to condemn those who carry on the Lord’s work in compliance with various State and Federal agencies.
SINCE THAT TIME, PEOPLE IN WHITE SPRINGS MADE THE FOLLOWING ACCUSATIONS:
One had no proof but said that the freezer at the Church had been broken and Richard Marshall was believed the one who took the food to serve to his business in Jennings.
Since Joe and I assisted Richard, we knew that he and Sabrina secured food from sources for pennies on the dollar. Other than what we provided as donations, it was my understanding that the Marshalls paid for all of the food. So when half of the food was left in refrigerator/freezers and not distributed, I did not question the motives because if they paid for it, it may have been food intended for their business in Jennings.
I do realize that he never donated the trailer we paid $900 for and he paid $300 to the churches; instead he kept it which was not our deal. If he did not pay us back, it should have been donated to a church or others so that they could have access to large amounts of food to give away.