Meet Madelynn: New Ministry Intern!
January 22nd, 2018 | Daniel Read
We’re thrilled to have Madelynn join us as a ministry intern this year. Many of you, of course, know Madelynn and the presence she has had in our community for a few years. Read on, so you can get to know more about her, and her new role in the life of Austin Mustard Seed.
Madelynn has been discerning what her future holds, and considering church ministry as one of her specific interests. She came to us asking to get a firsthand experience of what day to day church ministry is like.
She is joining our staff meetings and ongoing conversations as much as she is able, but she is also taking on two primary responsibilities:
- She is serving as our week to week liturgy coordinator, scheduling roles in liturgy and making sure all of us who participate are on track each week.
- She is also leaning into some of her clear giftedness in connecting with diverse groups of people. She will be helping us explore what it looks like for our church community to form relationships with people from many different backgrounds who are curious about following Jesus.
Tell us about your relationship with Austin Mustard Seed? How did you land here? What do you love about it?
I’ve been with Austin Mustard Seed for about two and a half years now, and it’s part of what makes it so easy for me to call Austin my home. The first day I came to AMS, people noticed I was new and asked me to dinner that week. I could tell right off the bat they were a people who didn’t just go to church, they lived out their identity as the church in community.
I try to bring friends with me to church because I feel like the practice of Liturgy and the people of the church are apart of who I am now as well. Everyone I’ve brought to AMS, whether they’ve stuck around or not, has had a similar first experience to mine. I often hear from my friends that it felt like a family. Many of my friends are international students and come from cultures were family is central to their identity and sense of belonging. It is a high compliment that they have a familial experience of Mustard Seed.
What will you be doing as an intern? What part are you most excited about?
As an intern, I have a couple of roles. I organize the weekly volunteer teams for Liturgy, research and implement community outreach opportunities, facilitate community group discussions, personally follow up with visitors and members in our community, and explore areas of growth both personally and pastorally.
I am most excited to find ways AMS can more intentionally engage with communities outside of ours and be better neighbors.
Where are you from?
Cypress, TX- AKA the Northwest ‘burbs of Houston.
What was your favorite movie when you were six?
Probably something that had to do with dinosaurs or princesses.
What is your all-time favorite band you’ve seen or would like to see?
I was really excited to see John Mark McMillan in the fall, I feel like I’ve grown up with his music, and I pretty much played the borderlands album on loop while I was in Turkey last summer. Other than that, I think right now I’d love to see Chance the Rapper (also played his album on loop last summer).
What are three books you wish everyone at Austin Mustard Seed would read?
- Walking on Water by Madeleine L’engle
- East of Eden by John Steinbeck
- If the Oceans Were Ink by Carla Power
What are you passionate about?
I love bringing people together from different cultures and backgrounds. I think I’ve experienced the God’s vision and kingdom most richly around my kitchen table with my international friends, where we drink tea, eat dinner, and speculate about life and God and belonging. It’s one of the reasons why I connect so strongly with the person of Jesus: he invited people of radically different backgrounds and beliefs to sit around the same table, ask questions, laugh, cry. He was all about the mess and beauty of communing with others. I think the world needs more of that.
What are your favorite restaurants in Austin?
Lucy’s Fried Chicken is hands down my favorite. After that, anywhere that has solid tacos or southern home food.
What is a verse or story in scripture that gives you hope and why?
The woman weeping at Jesus’ feet in John 13. It displays Jesus’ radical, countercultural love in a way that makes me feel welcome in his presence. It also shows how well Jesus loved and accepted the people society pushed the fringes. It’s not only a display of the unconditional love available to us, it’s a call to extend that love to others as well, no matter how different or similar they may be.