open door news
A Story of Persistence - Meet Kira & Chris
JULY 5th, 2018
Sometimes the best relationships are built out of persistence and unconditional love. Back in 2000, Chris decided to give of her time and volunteer as a Whiz Kids tutor at Open Door. She was paired up with Kira, a seven-year-old with a lot of personality. Kira wasn't an easy student to work with and her previous tutors had quit at the end of each school year. However, Chris was determined to stick it out.
When the end of the school year rolled around, Chris told Kira that she would be her tutor again next year. Kira asked, "Why?" She wasn't used to people giving her second chances, but Chris was persistent in her love and care for Kira. She tutored her through 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade! When Kira entered middle school, she began calling Chris her mentor and their friendship continued as she entered high school (the picture above was taken when Kira was 17).
Chris lost touch with Kira over the years, but was able to reconnect with her last fall after finding her on Facebook. They got together again and spent several hours thinking back on all their shared memories. Kira is now 25-years-old, married, and the mother of three small children. She has earned her GED and is working full-time to help support her family. Chris met Kira's husband, Ron, and he said he had heard so much about Chris! What a testament to God's work through this mentoring relationship.
We are amazed as we look back on the many life-changing friendships that have developed at Open Door over the years. It is so neat that Chris & Kira have been able to reconnect and continue on their journey together.
SERVING DENVER through urban immersion
June 21st, 2018
This summer has started off with a bang with eight different church teams joining us for Urban Immersion trips! This week, a group of 66 high school students from Vriesland Reformed Church in Michigan have joined us for a week-long immersion experience.
The group started off by helping Westside Church Internacional with a World Cup outreach. Since the neighborhood around the church is primarily Mexican, they invited their neighbors to join them to watch the Mexico vs. Germany game on Sunday morning, which was followed by a church service. It was a lively morning as the underdog (Mexico) stole the win in a 1-0 game and we got to eat "The Taste of Nations," a potluck breakfast representing foods from all over the world.
The group has spent their week volunteering at various ministries around the city, serving a hot dog lunch in the Family Room (pictured above), participating in street outreach to the homeless, and helping set up the Make Music festival with Confluence Ministries on the 16th Street Mall. We also brought in some of our pastors and staff to do training sessions with the group every morning to teach them about the community and equip them as they serve.
We are so grateful for teams that choose to spend their summers with us! If you are interested in bringing your group to participate in the Urban Immersion program, contact Megan Etter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 720-975-0103. We host groups any time of the year. You can learn more at odmdenver.org/urban-immersion.
grand opening of the new kitchen
june 14th, 2018
Last week we gathered together to celebrate the grand opening of our new commercial kitchen! When one of our Key Partners, Barb Roth, approached us and asked if she could fund a total kitchen remodel, we were beyond excited.
This kitchen is often the center of community life here on the block. It's used Monday through Friday to serve meals to our Learning Center students, Fridays for Celebrate Recovery, Saturdays for Jesus Christ Our Church, and Sundays for The Table. Since it hadn't been remodeled since 2000, it needed a facelift!
After months of work the kitchen now has commercial appliances, a great HVAC system, cabinets and countertops, and new flooring. We are so blessed to be able to continue ministering to people and building relationships as we serve and share meals together. And the preschool kiddos certainly agree!
Thank you, Barb, for seeing this need and generously blessing us with a new kitchen. We are grateful for our many partners that make this ministry possible.
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