Mark Crawford

Meet Mark…

Coming into a new place where you don’t really know anyone can be hard. I’ve spent most of my life moving around to different towns across Illinois. Growing up with both of your parents being pastors will do that to you. So I grew up moving all over the Illinois Great Rivers Conference. But no matter where I went, I was always able to make friends.

Going into college, I was convinced that I would become a History teacher. I wanted to help empower youth to think critically and gain a passion for learning. Little did I know, though, God had a totally different plan for me.

During my sophomore year, I began to feel a shift in my life. So I dropped the education portion of my degree, and also applied for a job at East Bay Camp. It was during my summer at camp that I began to explore the call God had placed on my life. I struggled for a long time to actually accept that I was called into ministry. After talking with my close friends and family, I decided that I had made the right decision. This all took a few years.

As I came close to graduation, I began to wonder what I would be doing next. I wasn’t ready for seminary, but didn’t have many other options. Then Jennie reached out to me. She told me about the internship at ISU Wesley, and how it is a year of discernment, where I can work on my call. Everything worked out, and I was starting my internship in August!

I have learned so much about myself and this ministry. It was hard coming in, because I was never a part of Merge prior to the internship. However, this group has become a family to me, very quickly. I have been able to learn that, despite my doubts at times, accepting God’s call on my life into ministry was the correct choice in my life. I am grateful for this ministry, and all it has already done for me, and everything it does for many other people.