More Than a Purple Mohawk

An outreach in Portland changes lives.

By Justin Oster   |  4 April 2013
More Than a Purple Mohawk (photo)
photos courtesy Justin Oster

Kelsey and Pixie met at the Portland Rescue Mission.

More Than a Purple Mohawk (sidebar photo)

Students gather on the steps of Pioneer Courthouse square in downtown Portland after a day of engaging others in spiritual conversation.

Kelsey was patiently sitting at a table in the dining room of the Portland Rescue Mission waiting for a homeless guest to join her. She hoped to simply bring a little joy and conversation into the lives of whoever happened to sit next to her. Guest after guest sat and ate for about 10 minutes before heading out onto the streets of Portland most likely to look for a place to lay their head.

Soon a relatively young woman with a purple mohawk sat down. Kelsey struck up a conversation with her and realized that she had a kind and gentle heart but didn’t really think her life mattered all that much. Kelsey asked her how she spent her days. Pixie answered by saying that she just tried to bring some joy and purpose to those whose life still had value and worth (unlike her own). Kelsey simply told Pixie that she thought her life still had value and worth. Pixie started to cry.

For the rest of the evening Kelsey and Pixie sat and talked about faith and Jesus. They prayed together. Kelsey shared with her the gospel message and Pixie indicated that she wanted this for her life and by all indications Pixie put her trust and faith in Jesus that night. We were able to connect her to some women specific outreach programs at the Rescue Mission and trust that she will find community and encouragement for her newfound faith.

Kelsey was one of 28 students from Montana State University who invested their spring break by going to Portland to help the team there to meet more students and potentially launch more movements. They did an amazing job. Pixie was just one of over 200 people these students interacted with during the week.

Watch another Portland outreach.