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NJ Church Opens Cafe Staffed by People With Special Needs To Fund Clean Water Initiative

liquid church clean water cafe
Screengrab via Liquid Church website video

Liquid Church, a multi-site megachurch located in New Jersey, opened a coffee shop at their Parsippany County campus on Monday (Oct. 3), which will be staffed by people with special needs and forward proceeds to the church’s global clean water initiative. 

Called the Clean Water Cafe, the goal of the coffee shop is to provide “delicious coffee, breakfast and lunch with a cause.” The cafe will serve the local need of “supportive employment for all adults, including those with Special Needs,” as well as the global need of clean water, which Liquid Church has already been a part of supporting through Clean Water Cause, a ministry run by the church.

“At Liquid Church, Clean Water is our global cause – and we envision a day when every person on the planet has access to safe drinking water! That’s why we’re committed to sending financial support and manpower to countries around the world,” their website says. “With the help of our global partners, we support clean water, sanitation, and hygiene projects in Africa and Central America.”

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To date, Liquid Church reports having drilled more than 360 clean water wells in nine nations, which has brought clean water to over 130,000 people—the result of more than $3 million in donations. 

“At the Clean Water Cafe, we believe that people with Special Needs can change the world for good,” said Brooke Stempert, communications manager for Liquid Church. “We hope that our customers and supporters realize that as they enjoy their favorite coffee, they are changing the world with every sip.”

Plans to open Clean Water Cafe were originally announced to the church and surrounding community in 2020, but the opening was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition to their ongoing efforts to provide clean water to under-resourced communities around the globe, Liquid Church is also well known for their ministry to those with special needs. 

Liquid Church hosts a special needs “Night to Shine” prom every year, turning their entire worship space into a party celebrating the special needs community. 

“It’s a little taste of heaven on earth,” founding and lead pastor Tim Lucas recently told Charisma. 

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Recounting the story of a family that commutes 90 minutes from New York to attend Liquid Church because of their ministry to those with special needs, Lucas recalled the family telling him, “Not only is our child being loved on, we get respite for an hour and 15 minutes. We actually get to sit in a service, hold hands…and we get to have our souls restored.”