Before starting my internship at The Chapel on July 1st, 2014, I was a volunteer since the summer of 2011. Having a great deal of experience serving with The Chapel, I was already familiar with the people, the type of work, and the atmosphere I’d be working in. In a way, this did give me an advantage as I did not have to stress over the typical “first day” experiences. According to my co-workers, my prior experience at the church was even an advantage for them. They could skip the “basic training” and already had an established level of trust in who I was and what I was capable of achieving.
From the beginning, I was very excited to dive deeper as a staff member than as a volunteer. I wanted to learn more than I could ever have as a volunteer. But I’ll admit, I was a little concerned that I was a bit overqualified. You may ask, “Overqualified? How can an intern ever be overqualified?” But it’s true. I thought that I may be entering this internship with so much experience already, that I wouldn’t have much else to learn. Luckily, I was very wrong. I’m continuing to build off of the skill set I already have, developing new techniques, approaches, and purposes for digital media.
From day one, I realized that being on staff is much different than being a volunteer. There is a unique atmosphere among Chapel staff. It’s not just about people sitting in their cubicles, preparing work for the coming Sunday. As a staff member, you’re part of a team – a team that uses their skills and abilities to fulfill the mission of the church. Aside from all the graphic design, video, and production work that goes on in the Worship and Creative Arts team, one thing dawned on me from the very beginning: we are a church first, above all else. Our primary focus is ministry. The ways we facilitate ministry are modern and creative, and perhaps nearly unheard of amongst many other churches, but it’s who we are. We are a church composed of artists, video and electrical engineers, and musicians who want to use their skills for more than just self-promotion. As a result, our purpose, the reason we do what we do, drives the work we output.