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“The State of the Door”

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Sitting here enjoying my late afternoon cup of coffee I am reflecting on where Purple Door Coffee has been, is, and will be. This reflection has made me realize a few things: First, a lot has happened in Purple Door’s short life. We have come a long way; Second, we have shared the story fairly well up to this point, but if you missed a post, a picture or an email here or there things may be a bit fuzzy. With both of these things in mind Madison and I have decided it’s important to give a “State of the Door” update.

We just want to update everyone very directly about where Purple Door Coffee is in the process. We’ve had a lot happen in the past few months and a lot more is in the works.

We will update you briefly on our financial state, our location search, how the ministry component is developing, our estimated timeline, what you can be praying about in the process.


We have broadcast a need of $122,156 for our initial start-up costs, and have been diligently working towards that goal. We have fine tuned our budget with information gained in researching commercial properties and the coffee industry, what we learned in coffee school, and what conversations with folks in the coffee industry have taught us, we believe this is still a pretty accurate number, but the numbers may have changed on the budget line (for example, higher cost for an espresso machine and less for the tables). While this is still our goal ($122,156), we hope to cut costs with out cutting any quality through donated, or reduced cost, goods and services. At this point we have raised $97,459. We’re praying for God to continue to provide the remaining expenses, as well as provide avenues of cost reduction without sacrificing any quality.

If you would like to contribute you can do so here.

Once we are open we have a 3 year goal of self-sustainability. As we sell more and more coffee our need for fundraising will decrease, but the managers’ salaries (mine and Madison’s) will be the last thing to be sustained by the business. Once we raise our start-up costs fundraising will still be needed, but hopefully and prayerfully in an ever decreasing amount. Madison and I are still in need of salary for the rest of this year. If you are interested in supporting us so we can together provide jobs to our friends on the streets, and help them see their incredible value please donate today, and indicate in the donation where you would like your donation to go.

Thank you everyone who has given financially to this project. We are getting so close, and are very excited for what God has in store. 


We have been looking for properties! This is a big process, and an important process. It is fairly common knowledge that a location can make or break a business. We’ve looked at several properties and driven through countless neighborhoods just looking at what’s out there.

We’re in the process of discerning if a property that we really like is the one for us. Your prayers in this matter are so desired and needed right now! We trust that God has a location for us that is perfect, but discerning which property is the key.

We’re very thankful for all the help we’ve received in this process already!


Our primary mission and ministry is to employ homeless youth and young adults as they seek to rebuild their lives from homelessness, but our ministry overall is larger than this. We are engaging in moments and seasons of power placed under individuals through employment, relationships, and loving interactions.

Once we are open we can fulfill the employment component, but right now we are daily able to have relationships and loving interactions that place power under people so they may live the lives God intended them to live.

Relationships and loving interactions know no boundaries of race, gender, socioeconomic status, faith background, or any other label that can be placed on people. Our primary ministry now is living into those relationships and loving interactions to help empower people whether that is in a church in a wealthy suburb or on the streets with our friends who live there.

As we live into this mission we have learned about some best practices in job training which we will incorporate into that third component. Coffee will be the vehicle we use to facilitate us living into this mission that has been placed on our heart.

Once we are open we will be able to fully live into the mission and vision that has been placed on our hearts, but that does not mean we cannot live into it on some levels now. 

God has been shaping Madison and I as individuals in this journey and as a business/ministry team. It has been a time of growth and development that we believe will provide longevity to Purple Door, as well as allow us to journey with our employees, volunteers, vendors, customers, partners, and anyone else connected to Purple Door in more meaningful, impacting ways.

We believe that the ministry we engage in really is our lives–ministry, simply put, is how we live. As we form this organization we hope that others can be inspired to live lives of ministry–whatever that looks like for them.

We will have very intentional program-like components to what we do and we are constantly refining exactly what that will look like, but overall we hope to be a very tangible representation of who Jesus is to this world to all people we interact with. We believe that has incredible power. The ways of Jesus are transformative for all that encounter them.



With all these things in mind we want to tell you what we believe the timeline to look like for Purple Door.

We have been shooting for the Fall of 2012! Here we sit in the Fall of 2012 (as of this past Saturday). Ideally we would be open already or opening next month, but in reality it is looking more like December 1st at the earliest (if everything went perfectly, but we’ll be working with government entities for permits and the like, so in some ways it’s out of our hands), and most likely by early-mid January. Seldom does our timing really matter–God has this really cool plan, and we trust that He is doing a Good work. His presence in this process has been undeniable, and us not opening at our original goal date does not negate that, or cause us to doubt as we move forward. We trust God’s will wins out, and we submit to that. We will keep working, praying, and loving, and we trust that God’s going to be with us in that journey. Our desire is to open sooner rather than later, and we’re going to work towards that goal! God will be present the whole time!



In all of this we ask for your prayers.

Pray for our funding: We need to raise the remaining start-up costs, and we will also need to continue to raise operating costs once we are open.

Pray for the success of the business so we can move towards self-sustainability.

One of our most imminent needs is salary for Madison and I. Pray our salary needs are met so we can continue to spend all of our time and effort creating moments and seasons of power placed under individuals through employment, relationships, and loving interactions, without the stress of figuring out how we’re going to put gas in the car or buy groceries.

If you would like to donate to our start-up costs, or salaries, please do so here.

Pray for our employees. God is already at work on the streets in many ways, one of which is preparing the individuals we will employ. Pray they make decisions that better their situation now. Pray that they are open to the work of God. Pray that they can see their value. Pray for opportunities for us to love deeply.

Pray for our location search. Pray that we are led to the space we are supposed to be in. Pray that we find a space that suits our needs. Pray for the landlord to partner with us in our mission and believe in what we are doing. Pray for permitting to go smoothly. Pray for the right equipment, decor and furniture to be found. Pray that it will be a space that God is clearly seen in the loving actions that take place there.

Pray for Denver. This is a city that we love, and we see God at work everywhere we go. Pray that God is made known in new and exciting ways each and every day.

Pray for Madison and I as we live into this vision and mission. God has worked and is working in our hearts and lives, and we are very blessed to be a part of what God is up to in Denver. Pray for wisdom, patience, joy, honesty, and, above all, love.


Thank you everyone who has journeyed with us this far. We ask that you keep trucking along with us. We can’t even express how grateful we are for your support, and how excited we are to continue moving forward. 

Blessings and Love from Purple Door Coffee to you all!

Layers of Meaning.

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Purple Door’s primary mission is to employ homeless youth and young adults who are working to exit street life. This is the driving force behind what we do. So, naturally is will run over into other aspects of the shop and influences every aspect of who we are. We believe in having meaning with everything that we do.

The coffee. Our mission is to help our employees live into who they can be by teaching them job and life skills. In order to communicate value we believe in teaching our employees to serve great coffee. Our employees deserve to work in a shop that serves a great product. We want to communicate value in teaching our employees to do something well!

A layer of meaning.

We also want to continue helping move to self-sustainability in the coffee we purchase. The roasters we have been looking at all source their coffee responsibly. They have relationships with their farmers and treat them with dignity and pay a great price for their product. This is very important to us as we want to communicate value through all aspects of our shop.

A layer of meaning.

The space. Our employees have been pushed down and thrown aside most of their lives. We know that they are still valuable and want to communicate that to them. We also are reclaiming objects that have been cast aside to incorporate into our design. We will use old doors, chairs, tables, shelves, etc. That have had a life but have since been neglected and thrown aside. We say these objects still have life, and can serve a valuable purpose.

A layer of meaning.

Our service. We believe all human beings have incredible value. We pray we communicate that to every individual that walks through the door. We want to treat them like royalty (this is where our name comes from). We hope that our employees see that they are a part of giving value. A huge hurdle for our friends on the street is that they don’t believe they have anything to offer. We will teach them about serving excellent coffee, good customer service and the like, but hopefully that leads them to see their capacity to give love to others, and to help others in their journey as well.

A layer of meaning.

It’s important to us that we are very intentional in all that we do. We won’t just throw things in without thought. Everything we add will hopefully add a layer of meaning to who we are and what we’re about.

Expectation Rooted in God’s Goodness.

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Every time a donation comes in we’re always amazed. We are still astounded that people are willing to put their money towards Purple Door. We’re not astounded because we think the mission is mediocre, or that our cause is not worth people’s support. We’re astounded because people could give to about million other amazing causes. Causes that are more established. Efforts that are already proving what they are doing is working.

We thank you for this. We’re constantly amazed by your generosity.

On the flip side of the coin we have come to expect donations to come in. Not because we place an expectation on you who are giving, but our expectation is rooted in the goodness and providence of God. God rewards those who pursue Him (Hebrews 11:6). At Purple Door Coffee we truly desire to reflect God into this world increasingly each day, and we believe God rewards that. We also know that we fall short, and God’s mercy, grace and forgiveness allow us to continue on.

We believe God is present in the work with Purple Door. This is simultaneously humbling and exhilarating; overwhelming and peace-giving; terrifying and life-giving. 

God has placed this vision and mission in our hearts. He has grown it, developed it, advanced it, shaped it. We are so amazing by His clear hand in the process.

We expect God to continue providing for the needs of Purple Door, not because of who we are, but because of who He is. He is a God that gives good things, and desires for people to know Him and experience the love He has for them. 

We are so blessed to be one of the ways that God has chosen to show His love to this world, and we are so thankful that we serve a God that makes up–exceeds even–our deep inadequacies. We couldn’t make Purple Door Coffee happen on it’s own, and if we did it would probably be pretty lame. We are thankful for the Love of God and how we are constantly being transformed by it. We fully expect God’s love to continue to be evident in our lives–both in receiving it and giving it. We desire for Purple Door Coffee to be defined by the Love of God.

Thank you for responding to the prompting of God in your support of Purple Door thus far. Thank you for sharing God’s love with us and our friends on the streets in Denver in the various ways that you have. We cannot express how blessed we are by you!

If you would like to help Purple Door here are some things you can do:

We’re entering a phase where many big decisions will be made that impact the direction, stability, and overall presence of Purple Door–things such as location, design of the space, purchasing of equipment, roaster (which we have visited several excellent ones this week), etc. These will all shape Purple Door in meaningful ways–pray for us as we make decisions.

Pray for the employees, whoever they will be. Pray that they are making decisions now that will enable them to be successful in their transitions away from the streets. Pray that they will see their immeasurable valuable. Pray for our friends as they continue to fight a very difficult battle.

Pray for funding to come in. We are so close that we can almost taste it! Pray that the remainder of the funding comes in, and continues as long as the ministry needs to raise funds.

We’re still in need of around $25,000 to reach our startup fundraising goal. If you’re interested in contributing (any and every gift is so valued and appreciated) you can click here.

We have a hybrid volunteer/donor opportunity right now. Read about Purple Door Coffee Advocates here. Anyone can become a Purple Door Coffee Advocate, so just ask–we’d love to partner with you.

Share our story with your networks and communities. The more people that know the Purple Door story, the better. We’re excited about what God has done, is doing and will do; and we’re always ready to have more people join the story! Post on Facebook or Twitter. Blog about us. Tell your church, your sports team, your family.

Be Creative
Brainstorm. Help us come up with ideas for the space, the job training, the life-skills training, whatever comes to mind. We like to think we’re creative, but collectively we can be even more creative. So, if you have an idea bounce it off of us! We would love to hear from you.

Thank you again for all your support and love for Purple Door. We’re thankful for you, and are excited to together be a part of what God is doing with Purple Door!


The Final Push!

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As of today we have right around $31,000 remaining in our start up costs! That’s not much compared to how much God has provided through all of you already.

We talk a lot about creating a community, a community that truly is Purple Door Coffee. In someways we’ve felt that our ability to shape a community is a bit limited until we open the doors of Purple Door. But here is a way you can be a very tangible part of the Purple Door community that will be vital to us opening our shop by this fall!

We need 31 individuals, families, groups, or organizations. 31. We have hundreds of people following the story of Purple Door. That number 31 is what will get us to our goal. We need 31 Purple Door Coffee Advocates working to raise $1000. $1000 is very attainable, and when you have lots of people working together it adds up quickly! We need reach this goal by October 15th so we can reach our fall opening date!

Once you sign up as a Purple Door Coffee Advocate you can get to work to raise that money however you want–bake sales, concerts, 5Ks, art sales, simply asking people for money, writing a check yourself, however you think you can reach that goal–get creative! We value creativity and would love to chat with you about your ideas. In doing this you will be doing some incredible things for the ministry and life of Purple Door Coffee. You will help us reach our fundraising goal–which we are SO thankful for! You will also help us tell the story of Purple Door to new people and in new places. Purple Door’s community will grow in so many ways because of your efforts! Thank you!

If you are interested in becoming a Purple Door Coffee Advocate we will equip you with videos and brochures as well as help out in whatever ways you need! Don’t hesitate to ask questions or bounce ideas off of us. We would love to hear from you! Email us at mark@purpledoorcoffee.com or madison@purpledoorcoffee.com.

So, grab a couple friends, your small group, your organization, your bowling team, your chess club, or anyone you can find and see what you can come up with to help provide job opportunities to homeless teens and young adults here in Denver, Colorado!