JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) — Haven of Mercy served their annual Thanksgiving feast today. This event is not only important to the community, but also to the volunteers who return year after year to help.

They’ve been putting on this Thanksgiving meal for close to 45 years. Today they served around 3,500 needy community members.

Almost 100 turkeys and 40 hams are cooked in their smoker and then go through their tiny kitchen to be served.

“[It’s] all by faith,” said CEO and Pastor of Haven of Mercy, Grant Rockley. “We don’t get any grants, or public money, or federal money, or state money. Everything is by faith. This is holy ground.”

Rockley says they’re happy to help people, especially with high inflation costs in food, but these inflation costs don’t concern them.

“We’re not really concerned about how much it costs or anything else because when we ask, the Lord supplies,” said Rockley.

The feast wouldn’t have been made possible without volunteers, who have spent the last few days preparing.

“We’ve worked till late last night on it and even this morning,” said Haven of Mercy cook, Patty Martin. “I come in at 7 o’clock and we’ve been working till almost time to start at 11:30.”

Angela Grant has been volunteering off and on for 13 years and sees this as spending Thanksgiving with her extended family.

“And I will leave here later on this afternoon and go be with my other family,” said Grant. “But, this is my family and I want to be with my family. It’s very important because we all know each other and live life together.”

Haven of Mercy also puts on a Christmas meal and wants all donations for that event to be in by December 15th. Donations can be made by mail or online by clicking this link.