Dates: July 13 – 18, 2021
“O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth.” (Psalm 96:1)
For many years, Trinity has offered Summer Sampler experiences for high school students, which in recent years we’ve come to call Sustain the Flame. Sampler’s origins are within the youth theology academies launched by Lilly Endowment, and sadly, at many seminaries these programs have ended due to a combination of decreased interest and difficulty developing a sustainable funding model.
At Trinity, we haven’t given up. Like the psalmist, we’re committed to singing a new song. In fact, our partnership with Capital University has opened up a new possibility for the summer program, centering conversations of faith formation and vocation in one of the most competitive and popular fields among our youth: technology. That’s why, this year, we are launching the Sustain the Flame: Faith and Technology Summer Camp.
Keeping the core elements of summer sampler – theological reflection and faculty engagement – high schoolers from rising 9th graders to 2021 graduates will also practice skills for vocations in emerging media programs like audio and visual recording, episode production, digital editing, marketing, and other aspects of tech-related vocations. The state-of-the-art equipment in Capital’s Convergent Media Center, along with the leadership of Mary Clare Kunkel, an incoming Trinity MTS student who is graduating this weekend (!) from Capital’s Film and Media Production program, will provide teenagers the opportunity to learn in professional television and radio environments.
Like Summer Samplers of years past, participants will worship together, learn together, form faith together, and sample seminary education together. What’s new this year is that, as they do this, participants will also produce their own media that will become artifacts for their college applications. Most importantly, though, they’ll practice these skills in a community centered on Jesus, asking how faith relates to the use of technology, how theological ethics relate to the technological vocations, and a deep investment in our 4D Faith model of vocational exploration. Each student will leave not only with a stronger set of skills and more knowledge of seminary, but a clearer sense of who God is in their lives and how to identify God’s call.
I invite you to encourage students you know to register for this event. Even if they aren’t tech savvy, this camp is for them. Every episode needs people who write the script, and every show needs people who market the content. We all have a part to play, so share this with any youth who you think might benefit from vocational exploration this summer.
Space is limited to the first twenty registrants so we can ensure each student has a mentor with a strong faith background and technical skill with the equipment we’ll use. Click this link to register. For more information, feel free to reach out directly to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
University Pastor and Director for the Center for Faith and Learning
Trinity Lutheran Seminary forms leaders for Christ’s church at work in the world.