Messiah News

A message of thanks from Pastoral Intern Katie Hendrikson


From the bottom of my heart—thank you.

It's hard to believe that it's been almost a year since I arrived in Vancouver and joined the incredible community that is Messiah Lutheran Church.

On my first Sunday as pastoral intern, Pastor Peter made a comment during my installation… he said "She called this 'your congregation.' By the end of the year, she's going to be calling it 'my congregation.'" And Pastor Peter couldn't have been more right.

Messiah has truly come to feel like my own congregation; a place where I belong. You have all truly welcomed me into your lives and families in so many ways and I am so grateful for the relationships that have developed because of this.

There is not enough time or space to say 'thank you' to every single one of you that have had an impact on my growth, learning, and development as a pastor this year. You have given me space to laugh and cry, ask questions, be challenged, take risks, succeed, and fail. Every experience with this community has been vital to developing my pastoral identity—I would not be the pastor I am today without this community.

I will sincerely miss so much about Messiah and its community, but I know these memories and experiences will be with me always. I am so grateful for the ways in which the many small groups and ministries of Messiah have welcomed and encouraged me this year. I will especially miss the Monday Morning ladies' group and playing Jeopardy! together.

A special thanks to a few groups of people…

My internship committee of Dave, Tracey, Tori, Christine, Mary Beth, Jim, and Todd-- Thank you for all the ways you have supported me this year. You have provided me with the best feedback, insights, conversation, and prayer any intern needs to grow, develop, and succeed and I am so thankful for each and every one of you.

The Staff—you are all some of the best coworkers I have ever had! I am thankful for all the laughter and joys we have shared together, the teaching, learning, and serving we've done side by side, and for the friendships that have formed. I know Messiah will be in great hands as it embarks into a time of transition because of the strength of this staff. Thank you for all the ways you have shown the confidence you have in me to be a leader.

My Preschool Crew—You are easily the best preschool teachers I have ever come across! You all were SO quick to accept me as "one of your own" and take me under your wings throughout the year. Thank you for all the ways you welcomed me, supported me, befriended me, and cared for me this year. If I learned anything from you, it's that it's okay, and even encouraged, to be silly and have fun with each other and in the work you do—a lesson I will carry with me forever.

Pastors Kathy and Peter—thank you for all the ways you have guided me this year. You have given me space to ask questions, challenge and be challenged, and grow in my faith. I appreciate the immense independence you gave me so early on in this internship and have learned so much from it. I look forward to applying this years' experiences to my first call and know much of what I learned will be so useful. I wish you both the best as you head towards retirement. It's been a joy to be your 11th and final pastoral intern!

I know there is a lot of uncertainty and fear in the change that is fast approaching this community, but I have no doubt that Messiah will come out of it better than ever. You all possess some of the strongest and deepest faith and devotion I have ever seen in a church congregation, and it is something to be proud of. I can only hope to someday end up in a congregation that resembles Messiah and its people.

I hope to stay in touch with as many of you as possible—please don't be strangers! I have never been good at goodbyes, so consider this a "see you later."

All my love,

Katie Hendrikson

2021-22 Pastoral Intern

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