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Kapa‘a Interfaith Association serves more than 1,400 meals

KAPA‘A — Dana Romsdahl and her sister Leigh’s hearts were overflowing with joy, despite missing the Kapa‘a Interfaith Association’s interfaith service on Thursday at the All Saints Episcopal Church and Preschool.

The Romsdahl sisters instead took advantage of the missed service to wander through and experience the annual KIA Thanksgiving Lunch that served up more than 1,400 meals.

That included 575 meals delivered to homebound residents in the Lihu‘e to Anahola and beyond by 90 volunteer drivers with the help of community sponsors, participating KIA churches, and an army of volunteers. The volunteers included a full compliment of helpers from Mark’s Place and Contemporary Flavors Catering.

“We saw a homeless person — the church lets him stay behind there,” said Dana who owns and operates Goldsmith’s Gallery and is a caretaker for her sister Leigh who is deaf. “We went inside the All Saints Gym where they were putting together the food for the drive-thru service, and all we could do was sign ‘Blessings. Blessings to all!’ America only sets aside one day in the year to give thanks. Every day should be Thanksgiving.”

Over at the Kapa‘a Hongwanji Mission that served as the center for deliveries to the homebound, Mark’s Place set up a second serving line under the supervision of Wendy Oyama, Chef Steven Nakata and others.

Jimmy Oyadomori and Sam Shirai were first in line waiting for their load of deliveries.

“We always make it a practice to be first ones in line,” Oyadomori said. “We have 10 meals going to the Lihu‘e area, most of them members of the Lihu‘e Missionary Church.”

Sarah Rodgers, the lunch chairperson, said the entire event is made possible through the efforts of the participating churches in the Kapa‘a Interfaith Association, and the generosity of sponsors that this year included Southwest Airlines, Mark’s Place and Contemporary Flavors Catering, the Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawai‘i, the East Kaua‘i Lions Club, the Secretario family, Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative ‘Sharing of Aloha,’ Happy Science and Safeway stores.

“The KIA has been so blessed this year with Southwest Airlines stepping up to pay all of the meal costs,” said Rodgers in a thank you posted at the church’s entrance. “This is truly a wonderful, blessed event with caterers that prepare and serve without compensation, year after year. This year, with no food cost, we are so blessed.”

Churches participating with the Kapa‘a Interfaith Association include the All Saints Episcopal Church and Preschool, the Kapa‘a Hongwanji Temple, the Kapa‘a Seventh-Day Adventist, the Kapa‘a United Church of Christ, the St. Catherine’s Catholic Church, the Kapa‘a First Hawaiian Church, and the Kapa‘a Jodo Mission.

The Kapa‘a Interfaith Association has been serving and delivering Thanksgiving Day meals for more than 20 years with Mark’s Place and Contemporary Flavors doing the preparation, cooking, and plating of the food supplied by the Kapa‘a Interfaith Association.
Source: The Garden Island

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