Student Ministries


Imagine students crowding your church doors waiting for them to be unlocked. Imagine that a majority of these students seriously question the necessity, authenticity, or their ability to experience Christ in a relevant way. Our missionaries encounter this SIX days a week when we open the doors of our church; Barnabas Tea Co.  Daily, our missionaries realize Matthew 9:37 “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few” as we manage over 15,000 student interactions yearly. 

The Big idea

Mission: We exists to cultivate a life, one tea at a time. 

Vision: We desire to spark a movement of God stories grown out of the Barnabas Tea Co. experience. 

We Believe

God's word

We believe the Bible (the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments) is fully and divinely inspired by God and is without errors in the original writing. The Bible is the supreme and final authority in faith and conduct.

2 Peter 1:20-212 Timothy 3:16-17


We believe that salvation is received by grace through faith in Christ Jesus. As we confess with our mouth and believe in our heart that Jesus is Lord and God raised him from the dead, the Holy Spirit, who is fully God, renews man’s heart bringing man into a place of forgiveness and justification through the merit of Christ our Savior being adopted into God’s eternal family as His children.

 Romans 10:9-10

Jesus Christ

We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ being fully God and fully man, His virgin birth, sinless life, perfect obedience to the Father, miracles, atoning death through His shed blood, His bodily resurrection, and in His ascension to the right hand of the Father.

 Isaiah 7:14Matthew 1:23I Timothy 3:16, John 1:14Philippians 2:6

Man / Sin

We believe that man was created by God in the image of God for a relationship with God. Through our disobedience toward God, man was alienated from God. Therefore, we, as sinful people, are incapable of a right relationship with God apart from receiving his divine grace bringing reconciliation to this relationship. This reconciliation was made possible through the death of Christ on our behalf and His resurrection from the dead.

 Acts 16:31I Corinthians 15:3-4Romans 10:9Ephesians 2:8-9

Heaven / Hell

We believe in a literal heaven and hell. The eternal status of those who follow and do not follow Christ is determined by Christ, based on their relationship with Him.

 John 6:47John 10:10Revelations 22:5

Second Coming of Christ

We believe Jesus Christ will come again to the earth in power and glory – both personally and visibly – to consummate history and the eternal plan of God.

 I Thessalonians 4:135:4, Matthew 24:29-31


We believe in God as the Creator of all things perfect in love and righteousness, eternally existing as the Trinity in three Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

 Deuteronomy 6:4Galatians 1:1Ephesians 4:6Romans 9:5Colossians 2:9John 1:1Acts 5:3-4

Earthly Purpose of Man / Missions

We believe man’s earthly purpose is to worship God and tell others about

Him. Every Christian is called to engage in the work of Kingdom building as God’s hands and feet by sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ and making disciples.

 Matthew 28:19-20

Our model


We like tea, we LOVE PEOPLE.  God created flavor, so our mastery of tea reflects general revelation, the goodness of God experienced in a cup. Further, we DO NOT have customers; we develop RELATIONSHIPS to share Jesus’s love, one cup at a time. We pray students will experience love in the cafe and join our volunteer team.

Our cafes exist for VOLUNTEERS! Most volunteers do not do ministry work BUT ARE THE MINISTRY. In Luke 5, Jesus sums up our passion, saying,  “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” Our youth group IS our group of volunteers. We create a platform where students feel comfortable fighting God, struggling with pain and frustration with God, or don’t care about God. As volunteers study the menu of life, our missionaries strongly suggest they try Christ’s Living TEA because they will never thirst again if they do. (John 4) On average, a volunteer invests 4-6 hours weekly into the cafe. They earn community service hours, employability skills, and a loving community to belong to. Our missionaries capitalize on this time to mentor or disciple students through everyday struggles and spiritual battles. For students who love Jesus, our cafe is a Salt & Light classroom where our missionaries disciple them in practical theology and relational evangelism. 

Studying Jesus’ ministry, God’s Word records all the necessary events and life-giving content, enabling those who call on His Name to know and understand their relationship with Him. Although God’s Word records ordinary and everyday accounts, this isn’t the primary content of Scripture. Jesus often summarizes His discipleship model in THREE words, “Come and See.” Scripture doesn’t record Jesus’ favorite olive, tea, or wine, but Scripture does record that anytime Jesus got involved in hospitality, it was the BEST! (Jn 2:10) Look at John 2; the key characters in this factual event are Jesus, His mom, Jesus’ disciples, the catering staff, the sommelier or master of the banquet, and the guests as extras.  The experienced sommelier (he compares this banquet to others) unknowingly credits Jesus as a great authority in Beverage. Jesus deeply challenged the worldview of each catering staff member responsible for filling the jars with water. It is not beyond acceptable biblical interpretations to believe some of those staff members disagreed with this perceived stupid task. Ultimately, the guest would need something to drink, but each server was preparing for guest complaints. Imagine the catering staff mean mugging Jesus each time they walked past Him with a hefty water jar, yet they experienced Jesus’ calm, confident demeanor, which communicated, “Come and See!” Barnabas Student Ministries follows Jesus’ A to B or “Task As Discipleship” model by inviting students to come and see what authentic faith looks like in action. Students experience faith in action, a sermon in motion when things don’t go as planned. The wedding planner didn’t expect to run out of wine. Who was most impacted by this event? The guests or the “bad day at work” catering staff had to work harder than expected. In whose story was Jesus the greater hero? The drunk guests or the catering staff. Look at another example when Jesus fed the 5000 and there were leftovers. (Matt 14)  The disciples experienced the greatness of God as they unexpectedly had to transport 12 very heavy baskets of leftovers. I’m sure the disciples viewed God’s abundance as a mixed blessing! People experience more ordinary events in life than extraordinary ones. Why is so much effort invested into creating extraordinary faith experiences when Jesus commonly used ordinary, everyday life moments to build the faith of His followers? Our ministry cultivates lives by creating ordinary experiences and training our missionaries to clarify the God Stories that occur every shift. 


990 – 2013

990 – 2014

990 – 2015

990 – 2016

990 – 2017

990 – 2018

990 – 2019

990 – 2020

990 – 2021

990 – 2022

990 – 2023

Tax Exempt Letter

Advisory Board

Mark Doss

Tom Lindsay

Jeff Winter 

Kevin Christiansen

The Barnabas Difference

Core Values

Who are missionaries are:

T- Teachable 

E – Enthusiastic 

A – Ambitious


Strategic Anchors

What are missionaries strive for:

Crafting the Best Local Tea

Creating Outstanding Experiences  

Challenging and Encouraging Students


WestRidge Mall

M-Sat.   11-8 

1801 SW Wanamaker Rd. 

Topeka, KS 66604

Enter by Petland, Walk towards food court 

Washburn University

M-Thurs. 11-7

Fri. 11-2 

Union Common’s Cafe

1820 SW Jewell Ave

Topeka, KS 66621