Exploring Ministry kicks of a new year

by Ben Rodgers

Last Wednesday marked the first meeting of Exploring Ministry, a group focused on giving resources to those who feel the call of ministry in their life. This year is the first time that this program is headed out of the chaplain’s office and paired with Religious Life Community (RLC).

The group originally started back in 2003 when Simpson received a Lilly Grant and was meant for those who were interested in pre-ministry work. 

“Our goal is to be a group that can meet monthly and hear from people who are active in ministry in some way, both from the perspective of someone who is doing full time ministry as a career, but also people who are doing regular everyday jobs,” said Mara Bailey, the college’s chaplain. “We want this to be a place, again where students heading into ministry can find support and resources, but also for people who are interested in bringing ministry perspective into their daily lives.”

The first guest speaker was Rev. Katie Dawson, a Simpson graduate who now works with the organization Imagine No Malaria.  While speaking to the group, Dawson focused on how her time at Simpson helped her realize her call into ministry.

Bailey said when considering who to have come speak to the group, they will be looking for someone with a connection to the college.

“We want to find people with a Simpson connection,” she said. “That way they can make that connection to Simpson students and say these are the experiences I had at Simpson that were helpful to me, these are things I wish I would have done and provide a natural connection whether or not the students sitting there want to do exactly what their doing.” 

Brian Williams, a sophomore transfer student from Nebraska Wesleyan, thinks this is a great program that Simpson offers, allowing those interested in ministry to gather a deeper understanding about it.

“Coming from my other school, we didn’t have anything like that and so any exposure to preparing for ministry and exposure to preparing for ministry was something I was interested in,” Williams said.  “I think this is beneficial and something that should be explored more, a lot of time when we’re in college we’re still trying to see whether ministry is a career path or just something we really want to be conscious of in some other career.”