by Jason Davis, LC Seminarian Intern
As a seminarian, I do a lot of reflection. So much so that I tend to generate gobs and gobs of paperwork full of said thoughts, feelings, and analysis. These writings are sent off to my seminary and my home synod where the higher-ups can see my thoughts, track my development in various areas of ministry, and my overall progression as a human being. And while it is sometimes a challenge or just plain tedious, this exercise of constant and continuous reflection has been quite formative for the preparation of the Word and Sacrament gig.
Last week, I completed my Mid-Year Evaluation. This is a significant milestone in the life of all interns as it is the largest reflection on internship to-date. Within said document, I had the opportunity to name my passions and gifts for ministry in an effort to continually discern who I am and how I am being called to ministry. There I reflected the following:
“I think I have a strong ability/passion to come into a ministry setting and creatively add programming that is unique to the specific context…”
And while this might not seem ground-breaking to you, when I read this line, I remember a part of me that has laid dormant since I left professional youth ministry. It’s one of the reasons, I said yes to this call in the first place and it’s one of the reasons that I am so excited for this Spring.
Beginning March 13, The Lutheran Center in collaboration with Southwood Lutheran Church will begin a new Lenten worship series hosted at the LC entitled Laud and Fare. At its heart, Laud and Fare is a collaborative worship service in the “dinner church” style.
If you’ve ever participated in dinner church, it is a fully integrated meal and worship. In fact, it is communion in the purest sense. Together we will serve, sing, pray, and share, using liturgy that is deeply rooted in the Lutheran tradition and at the same time, familiar and welcoming (think Taize, meets Holden, meets Agape Feast, meets something new). Through this integrated meal and worship we will be sustained in food, in conversation, and in community by bringing Lutheran Center and Southwood students together. At Laud and Fare, all students will participate through its entirety– cooking the meals, setting up the worship space, serving in worship, and leading music. At dinner church, you are not a spectator…you are a participant. This is true even for the clean-up! As the worship comes to a close, students will be sent to serve as each Laud and Fare will include a community service project that engages Lincoln-based local food pantries, non-profits, and other local social efforts. Through these projects students will learn about local service organizations in their community thus orienting all who participate as young-adult servant leaders. All of this will be guided by our Lenten theme, “Everything is Sacred: Reflections upon Faith in Daily Life”. It’s going to be new, yet familiar; exciting, yet grounded; ancient, yet filled with life.
Behind the scenes, I have been on an excellent leadership team bringing Laud and Fare to life. Included is my wife, Kellie Lisi, Diaconal Intern at Our Savior’s Lutheran here in town. As well as Drew Jagadich and Morgan Tranmer from Southwood Lutheran Church. This crew is creative, passionate about students, and so excited to see what God is doing through our partnership.
And so, as I reflect…this is good. Real good. It makes me excited to get out of bed in the morning and feels like I am living into a significant part of my call. I hope you all are afforded the same type of space to reflect and to consider what God is doing through you. So whether it’s a conversation with a friend or mentor, a lengthy journal entry, or through personal prayer, I encourage you to keep seeking, discovering, and remembering who God is and what God is doing within you. You never know, all that self-reflection might be worth it after all.