Our Story

St. Joseph of Santa Cruz


Shrine Coffee will be a non-profit, third wave community coffeehouse, operating as an extension of the Congregation of the Oblates of St. Joseph shrine ministry in Santa Cruz, CA. It is being established in the service of promoting the "culture of encounter" Pope Francis and his predecessors have encouraged, in the hopes of serving as a meeting place melding the ideas of wonder and welcome, for all people, whatever stage they find themselves in the great pilgrimage of life.

It will also seek to serve as a vital instrument for renewal during this time of “new evangelization” within the Church, hosting book clubs, study groups, and sponsoring guest speakers. Since 1952, the Shrine of St. Joseph has been a place of pilgrimage and devotion, inviting Santa Cruz tourists and local residents alike to enter ever more deeply into the prayer and sacramental life of the universal Church. With the addition of Shrine Coffee, the Oblates of St. Joseph community seeks to “open wide the doors” to our neighbors, and thus to Christ himself. The founders of Shrine Coffee are striving to maintain a state of life-long pilgrimage, and would like to help other seekers to do so as well, particularly those who are "afar off". Through craft, hospitality, and fidelity, Shrine Coffee will seek to provide an oasis from the false divide of mind and spirit, reason and faith, that modern man is accustomed to, and plagued by - and to do so in a manner following in the Church’s rich tradition of cultivating and promoting the beautiful and the good in service of the true.

The Catholic Church was once renowned for its appreciation for and patronage of beauty, in art, music, and architecture. The Shrine of St. Joseph would like to do our part to renew that association both in the building of this community space and the excellence of our coffeehouse offerings, emphasizing quality and artisanal craftmanship, beauty in the small things in service of the greatest of things. In addition to art, music, and architecture, the Church is home to a long tradition of expressing beauty through culinary, artisanal craft. This tradition reached its zenith in the prayerful work of Cistercian monks, giving us the pinnacles of beer and wine in Belgium and Burgundy. This commitment to prayerful, community-driven excellence lies at the heart of the Shrine Coffee vision. In so doing, our strategy is in line with the emerging consensus among the best thinkers in the New Evangelization, who encourage us to “lead with the beautiful”. The modern craft “third wave” coffee movement opens up a perfect way to do so, sitting at the interface of two real goods still loved by the unchurched seeking community-- mindful, artisan craft and personalistic justice.

Of course, to build this project out to such high standards requires an ambitious capital funding campaign. But the team assembled is confident that with so many doors being swung wide open up to this point, this is merely the next step, and we trust in Providence, the integrity of the project, and the professionalism of each of the team members, to speak eloquently for the worthiness of this campaign. Architectural plans were completed in 2015, zoning permit & building permits from the City of Santa Cruz planning department were secured, equipment has been hand selected, and local suppliers chosen. Rehab construction on the former Marello conference room began in August of 2018, and with our capital fundraising campaign having completed its 2nd phase goal, the final phase and buildout are scheduled to be completed by the fall of 2019. All contributions are tax-deductible, more information and online donation portal at www.shrinecoffee.com. Our gratitude in advance for any support, spiritual or financial, that you can lend to completing the building of Shrine Coffee, God bless you!