You might be familiar with the idea of a teaching hospital. Maybe you know someone who has done medical training at one or maybe you have first hand experience as a medical professional yourself. Maybe you have watched one of many medical dramas that take advantage of the energy, excitement and stress of that environment to tell its stories. Put simply, a teaching hospital is a place that educates those who are working towards caring for others in the future. It helps them learn procedures and practices, rhythms and movements, in a real medical environment.
At Granite Springs, we may not be the subject of a sitcom or drama (thank goodness!), but we have a similar vision. Sometimes, we even refer to Granite Springs Church as a teaching church. There are layers to what this means. At one level, we are all always learning together what it means to follow Jesus and live into the rhythms of grace he invites us into. On another level, there are those who sense a calling to ministry, even for a season, who need space and people around them to help them learn the practices and rhythms of leadership in the Kingdom.
Over the years, we have hosted dozens of seminary and college interns and resident pastors. Our beloved Kyu started with us as a ministry intern, and this past summer we had Ben Hoekman join us as he looked to live out his learning at Calvin Seminary. In this season, we’re thrilled to have Charlotte and Bridgette Kinsella (yes, they’re twin sisters!) join us as worship interns, sharing their musical gifts with us and exploring what worship means and looks like in our part of Northern California.
Of course, the beauty of being a teaching church is that the teaching doesn’t only come from the top-down. While expertise and experience are a gift, the reality is that we are a teaching church. It’s not only about learning from those with experience, it’s about being in a place with people who care for an intern and want to see them flourish. I’ve heard enough stories from interns to know that often it is not the meeting with a pastor that was most formational for them in their season at Granite Springs, but the conversation they had with you over coffee, hearing about your life and learning what it means to love one another and live out the gospel news of grace.
So, if you see Charlotte and Bridgette, say hi and get to know them (they’re good people, I promise). We’re all a part of this teaching church together and we’re all a part of this learning church together. May we grow together in the practices of love and the rhythms of grace in this season.