This summer, three U.Va. undergraduates are participating in the Summer Internship in Lived Theology, our summer immersion program that encourages students to think and write theologically about service. Beginning next Monday, we will be rolling out our interns’ excellent blog posts in which they reflect creatively and theologically on the service work they are doing this summer.
Our summer interns, Caitin Montgomery, Rachel Prestipino, and Melina Rapazzini, are working throughout the summer at three different service organizations. (You’ll learn more about the interns and the organizations in this Thursday’s post.) In preparation for this work, we held two training events this spring to ready them for summers of fruitful work and intentional reflection. These events both included other students and community members as well as our interns and staff.
First, we held a workshop entitled Parables of Privilege Meeting Poverty during which we talked with Josh Kaufman-Horner, co-founder of Mission Year and current director of the Center for Hope at the Charlottesville Salvation Army. Josh used parables from Christian scripture as starting points for conversation about privilege, poverty, and faith-based service, including how to navigate difference and avoid some of the common pitfalls of various kinds of privilege.
Later that same week, Vanessa Ochs, author and U.Va. professor of religious studies, led us in conversation about writing lived theology. We shared personal narratives around the dinner table and talked about the interrelatedness of story, truth, and faith. We also read and discussed examples of writing about religious belief and lived experience.
We can’t wait to share more with you about our interns and their unfolding summers. Stay tuned to learn more about Caitlin, Rachel, and Melina this Thursday, and for their own words starting Monday.