Being a youth ministry major at MU is always unpredictable. You could be wearing a mummy costume and chasing a group of kids through a library pulsing with strobe lights. You could be smashing a laptop with a pickax in preaching class. Or you could be bouncing around in a huge inflatable bubble during chapel.
This unpredictability appeals to Mason Lepisto, who entered the program last year and hasn’t looked back since. “I’ve known I wanted to do youth ministry since my freshman year of high school,” he says. “Kids at this age are in a very vulnerable time of life. They are struggling with self-identity, what to do with their lives, friendships and spiritual decisions.”
Lepisto’s classes are preparing him to serve wisely. “It’s helpful to have Bible and youth ministry classes hand in hand,” he says. “I need a solid base so that I can build the foundation for my ministry. I love the worldviews I get in each class. The professors are great, and I haven’t had one that I haven’t grown from.”
Everything about MU is helping Lepisto build this foundation. “I like the smaller size, the community and the relationships,” he says. “Even though I’m a commuter, there’s a place for me too.”
Lepisto has been volunteering as an assistant youth pastor at Glenwood Community Church during his time at Multnomah. The church is where everything from class translates in hands-on expereince. “I get to take what I’m learning and apply it to my job,” he says.
The unpredictability of being a full-time youth pastor is something Lepisto is ready to plunge into right after he graduates. But in the meantime, he’s thoroughly enjoying the learning process. “This program shapes my life,” he says.