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God’s Kitchen celebrates child in need with ‘Katalina’s Day’ in Kenosha

A very special Kenosha girl was showered in love and donations over the weekend.

After tragically losing both of her parents over the summer, 7-year-old Katalina Shope was celebrated with “Katalina’s Day” on Saturday afternoon at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church, 2223 51st St.

Shope’s mother died in July after years of struggling with a drug addiction, and roughly nine days later her father died by suicide after facing post-traumatic stress disorder. Katalina now lives with her grandmother.

Hundreds of community members and volunteers joined Shope and God’s Kitchen of Kenosha for a day of free food, bouncy houses, balloon animals and fun. It was all for Shope. Gifts and donations were collected Saturday, and prior to the event donations for a bike, roller skates and day bed, which were all requested in an event flyer, were presented to her.

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After being approached and asked for assistance by a young community member and God’s Kitchen volunteer, the organization became involved in organizing the event for Shope. Jaxson Thomas, 10, knew something had to be done for Katalina.

“Today is just a blessed day for Katalina,” said Arnetta Griffin, founder of God’s Kitchen of Kenosha. “A lot of people showed up for Katalina with gifts, so many people. It’s so beautiful. … It’s a good day.”

Shope’s grandmother, Victoria Hunt, said God’s Kitchen and Saturday’s event helped reignite her faith in God.

“It’s awesome. I am overwhelmed by the community, Ms. Arnetta and Jaxson. They brought back the faith that I lost. It means a lot to me that everyone in the community stepped up to help Katalina. It put a smile on my face,” Hunt said. “My faith is back. I’ll remember this for the rest of my life, and I think Katalina will, as well. She’s been counting down the days.”

Shope said Thomas “is a special young boy.”

“I love him so much,” Hunt said. “He saw Katty’s sadness and he found a way to make her happy.”

For more information on volunteering or helping to support God’s Kitchen, which is the organization supplying the free food, contact Griffin via phone 262-997-7136 or via email at [email protected] God’s Kitchen of Kenosha can also be found on Facebook @GodsKitchenOfKenosha.

IMPACT IN PICTURES: A look at God’s Kitchen of Kenosha’s impact on community

GOD’S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

Joan Picazo gets her hair done by Kenyatta Tubbs during a Thanksgiving dinner organized by God’s Kitchen and St. Luke’s Lutheran Church on Saturday.



GOD’S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

GOD'S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

Monique Moore, left, dishes up turkey for Judy Archer during a Thanksgiving dinner organized by God’s Kitchen and St. Luke’s Lutheran Church on Saturday.



GOD’S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

GOD'S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

Thanksgiving dinner organized by God’s Kitchen and St. Luke’s Lutheran Church on Saturday.



GOD’S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

GOD'S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

Griffin


KENOSHA NEWS file photo


GOD’S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

GOD'S KITCHEN THANKSGIVING

Pastor Russell Scoggins leads a prayer before a Thanksgiving dinner organized by God’s Kitchen and St. Luke’s Lutheran Church on Saturday.



GOD’S KITCHEN

GOD'S KITCHEN

Kareona Stanley, 7, left, and Angel Montgomery, 10, look through clothing during a community event at Kingdom World Ministries Church on Saturday.



GOD’S KITCHEN

GOD'S KITCHEN

Cleotha Warfield, 17, center, goes up for a shot while paying a basketball game with friends and members of the Kenosha Fire Department during a community event at Kingdom World on Saturday. The event was hosted by God’s Kingdom.

GOD’S KITCHEN



ARNETTA GRIFFIN PRE-EASTER MEAL

ARNETTA GRIFFIN PRE-EASTER MEAL

Jamie Griffin, left, and Gregory Bennett, Jr., right, grill brats and hamburgers. Arnetta Griffin held her pre-Easter meal at Kingdom Word Ministry on Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN PRE-EASTER MEAL

ARNETTA GRIFFIN PRE-EASTER MEAL

Sofia Roldan, middle, and her sister Victoria Roldan, right, look over the clothing available during a community outreach event Saturday at Kingdom Word Global Impact Ministries.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

A diner gets a piece of pie during the annual Christmas dinner hosted by God’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Youngsters fill their plates during the annual Christmas dinner hosted by God’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Saturday’s community dinner at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church included gifts as well as free food.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

A young girl selects from the many dessert choices at the annual Christmas dinner held by God’s Kitchen on Saturday at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

A child makes a face when asked if she wanted potato salad during the annual Christmas dinner hosted by God’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Brianna Straley, left, Nancy Sanchez and Jill Olbrys, right, help prepare the meal during the annual Christmas dinner hosted by God’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Arnetta Griffin, founder of God’s Kitchen, smiles while serving food during Saturday’s community dinner at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Barb Litz, left, packs toy gifts with Rashawn Garrett at the annual God’s Kitchen Christmas dinner at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Kenosha on Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Darrell Russell, second from left, helps get the food ready for serving at the annual Christmas dinner hosted by God’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Arnetta Griffin, founder of God’s Kitchen, served her annual Christmas dinner at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Kenosha on Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Barb Litz, left, helps Sarah T., second from left, pack toy gifts with Rashawn Garrett and Melissa Lazzara, right, at God’s Kitchen’s annual Christmas dinner Saturday at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Gifts, such as the one being held above, were part of the festivities at the Christmas dinner held by God’s Kitchen on Saturday at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Dominic Lazzara distributes candy-filled canes at the Christmas dinner hosted by God’s Kitchen at  St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Kenosha on Saturday.



ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

ARNETTA GRIFFIN ANNUAL DINNER

Cat Williams, bottom, has her hair done by Carolyn Miller, top, at God’s Kitchen annual Christmas dinner at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Kenosha on Saturday. Free haircuts and gifts for children were part of the event.



THANKSGIVING AT ST. LUKES

THANKSGIVING AT ST. LUKES

Arnetta Griffin talks with patrons during a Thanksgiving dinner in 2018.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin (center) gets a hug from Ulah Jones while distributing 40 packaged lunches in the Uptown district Monday at noon.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin distributes 40 packaged lunches in the Uptown district Monday at noon.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin distributes lunches to people along the sidewalks in the Uptown neighborhood.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin gets help from her husband, Terry Conner, at right, as she distributes 40 packaged lunches in the Uptown district Monday at noon. She can no longer serve meals from the parking lot of an Uptown business and is seeking a permanent home for her God’s Kitchen of Kenosha.



GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

GOD'S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

Jamie Griffin mans the grill during the one-year anniversary of God’s Kitchen in Uptown on Saturday.

GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY



GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

GOD'S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

Gregory Bennett Jr., left, and Jerrell Griffin, right, give hair cuts to Isiah Cooper, 9, and Javione Garrett, 6, respectively, during the one-year anniversary of God’s Kitchen in Uptown on Saturday, June 23, 2018.



GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

GOD'S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

Kameria Stanley, 8, gets her face painted by Darreonna Garrett, 12, left, as Taliyah Smith waits her turn during the one-year anniversary of God’s Kitchen in Uptown on Saturday.

GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY



GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

GOD'S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

Arnetta Griffin gets a hug from Areielah White, 9, during the one-year anniversary of God’s Kitchen in Uptown on Saturday.



GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

GOD'S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY

The weather was just right for Saturday’s one-year anniversary of God’s Kitchen. Here, patrons plate-up grilled goods during the celebration in Uptown.

GOD’S KITCHEN ANNIVERSARY



MLK CELEBRATION

MLK CELEBRATION

From left, GeorgAnn Stinson-Dockery, Arnetta Griffin and Kenosha District Attorney Mike Gravely, stand to receive the Humanitarian Awards during the 24th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration at Gateway Technical College on Monday, Jan. 15, 2017.



DD cookies

DD cookies

Arnetta Griffin decorates freshly baked holiday cookies Monday night at The Daily Dose Cafe, during an event hosted by owner Jennifer Capponi and employees, who pitched in so Griffin could give away the more than 2,000 donated cookies at her free Dec. 23 community Christmas dinner.


Bill Guida


DD cookies

DD cookies

Arnetta Griffin, right, who regularly cooks and gives away free meals to needy Uptown families, and Liz Matson decorate freshly baked holiday cookies Monday night at The Daily Dose Cafe. Griffin will give away the more than 2,000 cookies at her free community Christmas dinner on Saturday.

DD cookies for Arnette


Bill Guida


DD cookies

DD cookies

In the spirit of the holiday season, families, friends and individuals pitched in to spread Christmas cheer, decorating freshly baked cookies Monday night at The Daily Dose Cafe to bake and decorate more than 2,000 cookies for Arnetta Griffin’s free Dec. 23 community Christmas dinner.


Bill Guida


DD cookies

DD cookies

Left to right, Ruth Lenfesty, Mandy Kruski and owner Jennifer Capponi pitch in Monday night with others at The Daily Dose Cafe to bake and decorate more than 2,000 cookies to be given away by Arnetta Griffin at her free community Christmas dinner on Saturday.


Bill Guida


THANKING OUR COMMUNITY

THANKING OUR COMMUNITY

Janice Erickson, far right, one of the Women in Motion dance troupe, performs during the “Thanking Our Community” Kenosha Creative Space pop-up art event in Uptown on Saturday, December 9, 2017. The group was helping to raise funds for Arnetta Griffin’s God’s Kitchen of Kenosha, which makes meals for homeless and needy residents of Uptown.



THANKING OUR COMMUNITY

THANKING OUR COMMUNITY

Janice Erickson, far right, one of the Women in Motion dance troupe, performs during the “Thanking Our Community” Kenosha Creative Space pop-up art event in Uptown on Saturday. The group was helping to raise funds for Arnetta Griffin’s God’s Kitchen of Kenosha, which makes meals for homeless and needy residents of Uptown.



Uptown turkey

Uptown turkey

From left, Darreeal Garrett, Lady Essex and Lakeely Garrett line up for a Thanksgiving-style meal hosted by Arnetta Griffin at noon Saturday in Uptown. Some 200 people took part in the meal.



Uptown turkey

Uptown turkey

Prayer is shared before a Thanksgiving-style meal hosted by Arnetta Griffin at noon Saturday in Uptown. Within a few hours, some 200 people had been served.

Uptown turkey



Uptown turkey

Uptown turkey

Arnetta Griffin hands out plates for the Thanksgiving meal she served in Uptown on Nov. 18, 2017. A Testimonial Celebration is set for June 23 from noon to 4 p.m.

, to celebrate one year of God’s Kitchen of Kenosha being in operation.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin’s Friday evening meal is server in uptown with some volunteers despite freezing temperatures and her car running out of gas on the way.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin cooks Friday evening’s meal in her home kitchen before serving it in the Uptown area with some volunteers.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin serves dinner last month in the Uptown neighborhood with some volunteers.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

Arnetta Griffin, pictured here in a file photo, helped celebrate Easter in a packed basement of St. Luke’s Lutheran Church on Saturday.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

Arnetta Griffin, who prepares and gives away meals to the homeless every day, smiles while serving a big meal in Uptown.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

A moment to give thanks

Those taking part on Sunday’s Thanksgiving-style meal in Uptown Sunday form a circle before the meal. The meal was organized by Arnetta Griffin, who has been providing daily meals to the homeless in the Uptown area since May. See the story on page A1.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

Children load up their plates as they are served first during Sunday’s Thanksgiving-style feast served Sunday in Uptown, thanks to Arnetta Griffin, who prepares and gives away meals to the homeless every day.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

Children load up their plates as they are served first during Sunday’s Thanksgiving-style feast Sunday in Uptown, thanks to Arnetta Griffin, who prepares and gives away meals to the homeless every day.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

Children load up their plates as they are served first during Sunday’s Thanksgiving-style feast served Sunday in Uptown, thanks to Arnetta Griffin, who prepares and gives away meals to the homeless every day.



BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

BIG MEAL GIVEAWAY

Jeannetta Griffin, center, and her nephew James Griffin, right, work to set up food at a Thanksgiving-style feast Sunday in Uptown. The event was organized by Arnetta Griffin, who prepares and gives away meals to the homeless every day.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin hands out 20 free lunches to homeless people in Uptown Monday afternoon.

Arnetta Griffin



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin hands out 20 free lunches to homeless people in Uptown Monday afternoon.



Arnetta Griffin

Arnetta Griffin

Above, Arnetta Griffin gets a thankful embrace from Carl Ingram Jr as she hands out 20 free lunches to homeless people in Uptown on Oct. 9. Below, hands out takeaway plates for the Thanksgiving meal she served to all comers in Uptown Nov. 18.



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