The sun was beating down on the cement, with just enough humidity in the air to notice. It was the first day of training for the senior interns for Mercy Street’s Leadership Intensive. The Leadership Intensive is an annual internship program for college-aged interns to teach high school interns about character, grit, and the Gospel through running microbusinesses.
With squinting eyes and nervous stomachs, the senior interns walked into their new summer jobs. Katie Spring joyfully stepped into Mercy Street to meet the other interns and discover what her summer would entail.
Katie Spring was born in Arlington, Texas and now lives in North Carolina where she attends the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She found Mercy Street through a friend who moved to Dallas for graduate school. Katie leans over the dark wooden table as she tells me the story. “The Lord just plopped this internship into my lap!” Thankfulness is subtly exuding as she smiles through her words. “I was having a hard time finding something that aligned with working with youth and that would challenge me.”
For the last week and a half Katie, and the other interns, have been preparing, praying, and planning for the Leadership Intensive this summer. The internship has already started to refine her. “I feel very not old enough or mature enough to some degree. It’s a really humbling experience.” The interns have been on a bit of information overload through training. Training has involved watching videos, in a series called, “Helping Without Hurting” which works through the tension between missions and poverty.
There are so many ideas and lessons that have been touched on over the past few days. However, spiritual impoverishment has been especially prevalent. “It is true that we are all spiritually impoverished.” Regardless of physical and material circumstances, every single person is a spiritual being.
The high school interns started today, with a group lecture and will continue the week working in their micro-businesses. The senior interns, Katie included, cannot wait to meet all of the students and spend this summer together.