Unique Gifts That Equip A Call to Ministry
Part of our continued Summer Blog Series, you will read experiences from students who are participating in summer internships. This week you’ll hear from a student who is a Chaplain Candidate with the United States Air Force, which provides spiritual care and the opportunity for airmen, their families, and other authorized personnel to exercise their constitutional right to the free exercise of religion.
For the month of June I was a Chaplain Candidate Intern with the United States Air Force and it was awesome. I spent most of my days out and about with US Airmen. There were so many unique personalities I encountered (and, honestly, this was my favorite part!). I had the opportunity to be a smiling face that genuinely cared about one airman’s daughter’s soccer game or another’s spouse’s deployment. The chaplain core allows for full inclusion into the lives of our airmen to ensure that they are spiritually taken care of.
I’ve always wanted to be an educator because it allows for an opportunity to impact and be a part of the intimate details of one’s life. Prior to this internship, I had not considered chaplaincy in the same category. However, working as a chaplain intern has shown me that a Chaplain has the blessing of working in the world where people are. Instead of worrying about recruiting attendants to a chapel service, I went to where they were (sounds like what Christ did).
I am also in the process of preparing for ordination in the Reformed Episcopal Church. I love to learn new things, and learning the theology of my church has been a challenge that I have enjoyed. Who would’ve thought that I would become the nerd who enjoys reading theology in the summer?
Wake Div has truly prepared me for the Active Duty Air Force Chaplain Corp. The primary lesson I have learned in the ecumenical environment of Wake is that people are different, and these differences must be respected. The Air Force is full of many different people who have many different situations. Every interaction I’ve had with Airmen has been equally unique. The diversity of experiences from Wake allows me to embrace these differences among the ranks and find the best way to minister to the Airmen’s needs. I firmly believe that had it not been for the people at Wake I’ve been with over the last two years, my view of the world would be very tainted towards my preferences, and would thus eliminate my opportunity to minister to all.
Moving forward, I know without a shadow of a doubt that I want to be a minister. That ministry could be chaplaincy, photography (another passion of mine), or education. Through this internship I’ve learned that these passions are not one or the other, rather they all are ministry, and can easily be aspects of the unique ministry God has created me to provide.
I’m really excited about what the future holds. Next month I’ll be back at my local church in Winston-Salem working with their web presence. If I had to name one difference between when I left and when I return, it would be that I’ve accepted this call to ministry. I’m really excited to see what that means and where God puts me.
Arthur Cameron Robinson is from Goose Creek, South Carolina. He is a 2Lt in the United States Air Force and owns his own photography business, PhotosByCameron. He is married to his college sweetheart, Joylyn.