This weekend, we’re throwing a special goodbye party for our beloved intern, Jackie Rodriguez! Jackie has interned with our Youth Ministries since she started at Texas Wesleyan University four years ago, and this May, she’s graduating!
I have had the great privilege of working with Jackie three of those four years, and it has been so much fun to watch her grow up, grow into her own skin, and figure out where God is calling her. Jackie is fun, compassionate, honest, and loves our teenagers dearly. She has made me laugh harder than any person I’ve ever worked with, and it is wild thinking about where she was when I started, and where she is now, and how much she has changed.
For her next adventure, Jackie will be joining the U.S. Navy as a Religious Program Specialist, meaning that she will work with Chaplains in providing religious and spiritual support programming for troops wherever she is stationed. Jackie has ambitions of law school in her later future, so this is a way-stop along that journey, but I can’t help but smile at it. After years of helping make lemonade, run slides, lead small groups, and love teenagers, after years of middle school lock-ins, high school retreats, Revolution Weekends, worship nights and service events, Jackie is taking a job for the Navy . . . doing basically the same thing, just with a slightly older crowd.
Because we can’t resist a good theme party, this weekend will be “Basic Training” and we’ll be having treats and games and all kinds of Navy-themed fun as a celebration of the end of the year and Jackie’s years of service to the ministries!
Jackie is a delight, a staple of this youth ministry, and will be very missed by teenagers and staff. We are so excited for her next phase in her journey, and are grateful that we got to be part of her story for this long. If you see Jackie around this weekend or next weekend, thank her for her years of working with the teenagers, and wish her smooth sailing for her next steps!
Director of Youth Ministries