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The Pastoral Internship Program

Overview

The Pastoral Internship Program at Grace Polaris Church seeks to develop and invest in potential ministry leaders who display godly character, giftedness, and interest in local church leadership. This is done by providing structured ministry opportunities and intentional personal investment for the intern.

The Pastoral Internship Program program lasts approximately ten weeks (from early- to mid-May through early August) and is available for men enrolled in college or seminary. The goal of the program is to assist men in their preparation for ministry in a local church setting. It is not meant to be a comprehensive assessment of the participants’ gifts and abilities, but is rather designed to introduce them to the life of pastoral ministry.


Background

For over 52 years our church has been committed to Jesus Christ and to the proclamation of His Gospel, as expressed in our mission statement:

Grace Polaris Church exists to honor God by multiplying devoted followers of Jesus through worship, community, training, and witness.

The biblical commission to make disciples of all nations is critically urgent. Therefore, it is equally pressing to develop leaders of local churches who will be adequately equipped to stand firm in Christ and lead the Church into the future.

We are committed to leadership development and are asking God to raise up men of good character and integrity as leaders in His Church around the world. Our Pastoral Internship Program allows us to intentionally and systematically develop leaders who are committed to the Kingdom of Christ and the building of His Church. Below you will find a more detailed overview, description, and application for the Pastoral Internship Program. Our hope is not simply to offer experiences, but to encourage love and devotion to Christ and obedience to His calling.

If you are interested in leadership of the local church, we hope the Pastoral Internship Program at Grace Polaris Church can be of assistance to you. Please contact Pastor Zac Hess with any further questions.


A Typical Week

The intern will split his time between ministry observation (such as ministry leader meetings), assistance (such as planning and administration), participation (such as small groups and teaching), and reflection (such as intern investment meeting, reading, and writing). Interns will be responsible for various reading and writing assignments, small group discussion and reflection, as well as teaching and leading opportunities.

The intern will be expected to attend staff meetings, elder’s meetings, pastoral meetings, all public services, staff prayer times, intern investment meetings, weekly service reviews, weddings, wedding rehearsals, funerals, and any miscellaneous meetings that arise throughout the week. The intern is expected to schedule individual lunches with at least three church elders and each member of the pastoral staff. The intern should also schedule individual lunches with three people who have been at the church for more than ten years and three people who have been at the church less than ten years. These meetings provide deeper insight into the history of the local church and the lives of the church’s leaders.


Reading and Assignments

Books

  • Gaining by Losing, J.D. Greear
  • The Trellis and the Vine, Colin Marshall & Tony Payne
  • A ministry biography/history (choose one):
    • Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor, D.A. Carson
    • Loving God, Charles Colson
    • Here I Stand, Roland Bainton
    • Jonathan Edwards and the Ministry of the Word, Douglas Sweeny
    • From Jerusalem to Irian Jaya, Ruth A. Tucker
    • Restoring the Household, Todd Scoles
    • Finding our Focus, David Plaster
    • A book of your choice upon approval
  • One additional book selected by the Pastoral Staff

Assignments

  • One two-page book response for each reading
  • Case studies: written and verbal responses to situations that arise in ministry related to leadership, vision, theology, and shepherding
  • Intern evaluation: written and verbal evaluation of the intern’s character, gifts, abilities, strengths, and weaknesses
  • Weekly reports: written reports that allow the intern to put forth questions and personal responses to what God is teaching them and what they are learning during the program