written by Tina Heise, a third-year MDiv student on internship at Bethel Lutheran Church in St. Louis, MO
I recently told Dr. Esther Menn something I never thought I’d say: “I use Hebrew every week on internship.”
As my classmates can attest, I am not a language person. Learning Hebrew was one of the hardest moments academically in my entire life. I cried more for that class then when my three-year-old nephew has a temper tantrum. I thought for sure Hebrew would be the thing that would keep me from moving forward in the candidacy process.
Somehow, by the grace of God and the gentle nature of Dr. Menn, I survived the class – positive I would never use it again. Then I began my internship at Bethel Lutheran in St. Louis, and now I use Hebrew every week!
Bethel is a community deeply rooted in scripture and theology. They believe that the Word of God is transformative. They want to know their Bible. Each Bible study brings huge delight from a few simple word studies. Just a little bit of Hebrew is transforming their reading, and surprisingly transforming their lives.
I will never be a language person. Hebrew at times can still bring on the tears. But it is worth the work to serve my community, helping them see a side of scripture they had never experienced.