Go and Serve – The Story Behind Rejoice City Coffee

As Christians, Jesus calls us to go and share the gospel, to minister to the lost. 

While serving as an associate pastor in Seneca, S.C., Emmanuel alumnus Rick Turner ’07, heard this message loud and clear. A Greenville, S.C.-based group called Switch visited Rick to share their anti-sex-trafficking mission with him. 

“Their presentation showed what sex-trafficking looks like,” he remembered. “The passion was birthed in me from that moment.” 

Rick trained with the non-profit and went on to meet with survivors, who shared their stories. “It was powerful to hear how their lives were, and still are, affected by the trauma,” Rick said. 

Through the survivors’ stories, something came alive in Rick and his wife Maggie’s hearts. They not only felt the need to make a difference, but to also raise awareness about this issue in the church. 

This is how the idea for Rejoice City Coffee was brewed. 

Rick opened Rejoice City Coffee in 2018. The coffee shop sells high-quality coffee and merchandise, with 10% of profits going to the fight against sex-trafficking. “Drink good coffee, fight the bad guys,” the coffee shop calls to customers. Rick and Maggie’s goal is to become a supplier for churches. 

How have Rick and Maggie’s involvement made a difference so far?

“The biggest thing has been raising awareness and educating people on what trafficking looks like and who are the most vulnerable,” Rick explained. 

Though these business owners are living their passion for helping others today, Rick’s dedication to ministry and service began when he was young.

“I was called into ministry when I was 17,” he shared.  “I came to Emmanuel to study to become a pastor.”

Because of his time in the EC School of Christian Ministries, Rick felt prepared to go and serve. 

“My professors taught me how to do the hard work of interpreting the Bible,” he said. “They showed me how to understand the heart of God through his word, and how to apply it to the context in which I live.”

After graduating, Rick and Maggie remained at Emmanuel for a few years. Rick served as the Residence Director for Wellons and Drum Hall and Maggie served as the associate Campus Pastor. 

Because of his time in the EC School of Christian Ministries, Rick felt prepared to go and serve. 

What advice would Rick give to anyone looking to get involved in a cause? 

“First, make sure you are trained and educated on what would be a good way to get involved to make a needed impact,” he said. “Next, don’t wait. If it’s in your heart to do it, make the moves toward getting trained and educated.” 

Interested in partnering with Rick and Rejoice City Coffee in the fight against sex-trafficking? Visit them online to reach out!