Joy Church in Mt. Juliet is building a coffee house with outdoor sand volleyball courts as a ministry hub for young adults.
“It’s a hangout with a higher calling,” said Joy Church Senior Pastor Jim Frease.
The name of the $1.5 million coffee house to be built near the corner of Lebanon Road and Benders Ferry Road is Kairos Coffee House. Kairos is a Greek word meaning “opportune moment.” The targeted opening date is early next year.
The church’s goal is to provide outreach to those 18 through their 20s. This new building is on the church’s existing property, where a small frame house currently sits. Church officials said they did not have to rezone the property because as a church entity, they have a conditional use approval that was recently extended by the City of Mt. Juliet.
“National studies show that once church-going teenagers graduate from high school, 65 percent of them drop out of church,” said Joy Church Executive Pastor Dave Goldner.
The church currently has about 2,300 members, many of whom are young adults.
“Joy Church, since the beginning, and our pastor Jim Frease, have a heart to reach out to the community over the years to most effectively love and serve,” said Goldner.
Through the years the church has served more than 45,000 citizens with free meals through its mobile kitchen. In 2016, Joy Church built its “Landing” facility on church grounds as an outreach for kids.
“It’s like a hybrid Chuck E. Cheese place with video games and a half basketball court and just a place for this young demographic to come and have fun in a safe environment,” Goldner said.
“Pastor Frease has such a heart for the community’s young adults. We have area colleges, like Cumberland University, and those downtown, a lot of students and young professionals are here, or come here.”
The plans for the two-story building include multiple decks for seating overlooking the two sand volleyball courts and Wi-Fi accessibility. It will be 3,600 square feet with about 800 square feet of outdoor space.
Pastor James Biddle oversees the church’s Joy Ride Group that is this targeted demographic. He said that once kids graduate high school, they lose a God place. Biddle said his group of young adults plan to volunteer in the coffee shop.
“They are the future leaders of tomorrow,” said Biddle. “There are so many voices competing for their attention. It’s an honor to focus on them. I fear we are losing this generation and we want to capture them.”