COVID not stopping Thanksgiving

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    The East Kaua‘i Lions Club moved from volunteering at the Sheraton Kaua‘i Coconut Beach food distribution for its employees to present $500 from the East Kaua‘i Lions Club Foundation to the Kapa‘a Interfaith Association for its annual Thanksgiving community lunch. From left are EKLC President Janice Bond, Lion Rebecca Carnate, Past District Governor Roy Nishida, Lion Zone Chair Harvey Kinoshita, Lion Felicia Cowden, Lion Donald Nagamine, Lion Giorgio De Paz, Lion Juan Ochoco, Lion Joanne Ochoco, Lion Helena Cooney, and Lion Past District Governor Kelvin Moniz.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Kapa‘a Hongwanji Mission’s Roberta Yanagawa, left, and the Rev. Mieko Majima, right, present a $2,000 check from the Honpa Hongwanji Committee on Social Concerns to the Kapa‘a Interfaith Association Thanksgiving Community Lunch co-chairs Sarah Rogers and Mary Margaret Smith. Yanagawa said the Honpa Hongwanji has been supporting the event for the past five years.

KAPA‘A — Donations from the East Kaua‘i Lions Club Foundation and the Honpa Hongwanji Committee on Social Concerns came flowing into the planning meeting for the annual Kapa‘a Interfaith Alliance Free Community Thanksgiving Lunch at All Saints Espiscopal Church.

The annual event is scheduled for Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 26, and presented by nine participating alliance churches: All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Happy Science, Kapa‘a First Hawaiian Church, Kapa‘a Hongwanji Mission, Kapa‘a Jodo Mission, Kapa‘a Seventh Day Adventist Church, Kapa‘a United Church of Christ, Lihu‘e Hongwanji Mission and St. Catherine Church.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly affected our state’s economy due to our reliance on tourism and travel,” said event co-chairs Sarah Rogers and Mary Margaret Smith.

“Many working families are faced with unemployment, loss of income, and need food and housing assistance. For these reasons, the Kapa‘a Interfaith Alliance and Mark Oyama of Contemporary Flavors Catering realize the need to provide a meal for the community to celebrate in the spirit of Thanksgiving, and express our gratitude for the many blessings we share.

“On Thanksgiving Day, the churches will come together for an interfaith service, which will be held outdoors on the All Saints Episcopal Church lawn, starting at 10:30 a.m.,” Smith said.

Following the service, a drive-thru meal pickup prepared by Mark’s Place and Contemporary Flavors Catering will take place. Mark Oyama and his staff will donate their time to prepare, deliver and assist in serving the meals for the pickup and delivery sites.

“Wendy Oyama of Mark’s Place told me, ‘We can’t let this COVID-19 thing stop Thanksgiving,’” Smith said.

Meal deliveries for those who are unable to attend the event in person will be packed and distributed at the Kapa‘a Hongwanji Mission social hall to reduce traffic at the All Saints location.

This year’s meal will be enhanced with the addition of a bag of food at both the delivery and pickup sites courtesy of the East Kaua‘i Lions Club and the Kaua‘i Independent Food Bank.

Our current annual supporters include an All Saints parishioner, the Honpa Hongwanji Social Concerns Committee, the Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative Sharing of Aloha, the East Kaua‘i Lions Club Foundation and the participating alliance churches.”

The interfaith Thanksgiving project started in 2003 at the Kapa‘a Hongwanji Mission, where the meals were assembled by a chef and volunteers in the church’s kitchens.

1 Comments
  1. Frank Sterle Jr. October 5, 2020 9:54 am Reply

    Though not meant to seriously offend readers’ holiday sensitivities, I penned the following rhyme in genuine consideration of the countless worldwide for whom there is/was naught to be thankful on our Thanksgiving Day—nor any other day, for that matter …
    GRACE
    Pass me the holiday turkey, peas
    and the delicious stuffing flanked
    by buttered potatoes with gravy
    since I’ve said grace with plenty ease,
    for the good food received I’ve thanked
    my Maker who’s found me worthy.
    It seems that unlike the many of those
    in the unlucky Third World nation,
    I’ve been found by God deserving
    to not have to endure the awful woes
    and the stomach wrenching starvation
    suffered by them with no dinner serving.
    Therefore hand over to me the corn
    the cranberry sauce, fresh baked bread
    since for my grub I’ve praised the Lord,
    yet I need not hear about those born
    whose meal I’ve been granted instead,
    as they receive naught of the grand hoard.


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