New Staffing Announcement!
This post is an excerpt from the August Valley and Mountain Newsletter "Let's Get Weird: Bodies, Sex, Ecology and Sacraments + New Staffing Announcement!" in which Summer shares their new role as youth ministry director.
I'm Summer, I enjoy spending time tucked away under soft blankets or outside with the sunshine on my face. I also enjoy reading science fiction books. My favorite book right now is “The Farthest Shore” by Urula K. Le Guin. I live at home with my partner, Adam. We share our apartment with a feisty teen bunny, Xena, and a sweet old dog, Momo. I am looking forward to getting to know you and learning about your interests too!
Here is a list of things I like:
color: yellow/orange (think sunset)
smell: eucalyptus, lilacs, pink roses
food: garlic, asparagus, peaches
drink: sweet tea, lemon-lime soda
sound: birds, wind in leaves, chimes
place: any library, any bookstore, any waterfall, and ocean
people: Adam, Tessa... there are so many people I love!
I attended Seattle University where I obtained my bachelor’s in Theology and Religious Studies. Currently, I am a graduate student at University of People working toward my Masters of Education in Advanced Teaching. I look forward to taking future classes that interest me and help me to better support my students.
I follow earth-based and Christian traditions in some ways, like, scripture, traditions, stories, and special days or events. My spirituality is informed by my lived experiences playing, growing plants from seeds, saying sorry and asking others to say it when they should, and imagining alternatives to the world as I know it as a survivor of domestic violence. I have grown beautiful faith relationships with playful change-makers, community organizers, and those who practice un-settling Christian traditions.
I have found my joy and imagination flourish in learning spaces! I view my role as a youth minister as one in which I can build relationships, as well as offer a blueprint or framework where students’ experiences, wisdom, and ideas can flourish. Youth leadership within ministry is crucial. I am honored to be invited into this role with Valley and Mountain. I hope that we are able to weave together the knowledge each of us brings to cultivate joyful, imaginative, and intergenerational spiritual learning.
Currently, in addition to supporting youth ministry with V&M, I work as a full-spectrum doula. My primary role as a doula is educating families including youth and adults in periods of transition such as birth, illness/disability, and death. When we deepen our transitions (our small moments, our big moments, sometimes-easily-brushed-away moments) we make a choice to invest strategically into them. I believe that by doing this, over time we can build authentic faith and joy. In this way, I hope to join alongside the youth ministry that is already happening each day.