Anya Powers is a person with whom we will become well acquainted beginning in September. She is our Yale Divinity School Intern for the 2018-2019 academic year. Anya is in the process of discerning weather or not to become ordained in the United Church of Christ. Her home church is in Boulder, CO. Anya’s resume is rich and varied, but a couple of things in particular leap out at me. She is a graduate of the U.S. Marine Corps, basic training at Quantico, VA, and will be coming to us fresh from U.S. Air Force basic training in Alabama. Anya hopes to be a Chaplin in the U.S. Air Force. Something else that spoke to me about her character: Anya is a service dog handler. We have much to learn from our incoming Intern.
During her time with us, Anya will have the opportunity to participate in the varied aspects of our life together. Visiting, working with our children, leading a Bible Study or Lenten Series, Preaching and helping to lead worship are a few of the things she hopes to experience while with us.
One of the great opportunities taking place as Anya comes into our community of faith is that we will learn what it means to be a “Teaching Church.” Anya is not another staff person. She is our student, I am her supervisor and we are all her teachers. I am required to participate in a monthly meeting with other supervisors of Yale Divinity School students. I will spend at least one hour a week with her in theological reflection, apart from planning and logistics (the Divinity School requires that she work no more than 13 hours per week). We will all participate in her formation as a teacher, a pastor and a preacher. We will introduce her to others, share our history and reflect with her on her preaching and worship experiences.
We all know when someone new enters into our church we are never the same. I have no doubt Anya will affect our community, and we will have an effect on her, for Anya has decided that we will participate in the sacred journey of helping her discern God’s calling in her life. Who knows what God has in store for us? But I’m sure God has something in mind.
You know, Jesus called some folks together, trained them up and sent them out to spread the Gospel. Isn’t that what we’re doing? May the Holy Spirit guide and bless us as we continue the tradition.
In joyful expectation of Jesus’ coming realm of love and justice,