Several years ago I was in a meeting when an idea came up. What if we could find a coffee supplier that would align with our vision and desire to partner significantly in stopping the AIDS pandemic in Africa? It wasn’t my idea (John Parker always has the best ideas), so I can say it was a great idea— like really great and also really big. An idea that, if we were going to do it right, needed a lot of research and time.
Side Note: As you probably know, Summit folks love coffee. Coffee is a huge part of our culture as a church— right up there with reaching people, connecting in Christ-centered relationships, teaching truth, serving others, and worshiping God. So if we were going to change what we served, we knew it needed to be good.
I was in a busy season of ministry and unfortunately could not commit the time and energy needed for this project. Luckily though, our Be An Intern program was just in the beginning stages for the year, so I decided to submit the idea as an intern project. Applications were submitted, interviews were held, and Mary accepted the internship and the project. And that, my friends, was the beginning of something great.
Mary spent the summer researching coffee suppliers and taste-testing different roasts, while some of the staff even got to help with the research too! Like I mentioned, Summit folks love coffee and the staff is no exception. At the end of the summer, we landed on a blend from Ethiopia. Not only is this blend delicious, but it makes an impact in Africa by supporting local coffee roasters. It’s organic, fair trade, and aligns well with our vision and our already existing partnerships in Africa. (You can learn more about it at deansbeans.com...and you should!)
The Oromia blend is served each Sunday and Thursday at worship services, on Mondays for reGROUP, and in our offices during the week. Really anytime you are at Summit, there is coffee available and it’s the coffee that Mary decided on. So, the next time you grab a cup and pour some hot coffee before you head into service, you’ll know it’s all thanks to an intern.
This is just one of the many stories of someone stepping into an intern role and completing a project that has a lasting effect on the way we do ministry at Summit. I’ve seen this happen many times over the past seven years I’ve been on staff and it’s an amazing thing to see each time. I look forward to seeing what God will accomplish this summer through our interns giving of their time and talent to further God’s work in His church.
If you are interested in coming alongside us and making an impact in ministry here this summer, apply to be an intern here.
Jessica Meyer is the First Impressions Director at Summit. She absolutely loves, and is also really great at, helping folks at Summit take their next right step—whatever it may be! Shoot her over an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.