What’s NEXT?

As another school year wraps up and we move into Summer, we could probably all pick out someone among us still looking to push forward into some kind of personal ministry experience. Since Church on the Move started offering NEXT internships, we’ve encountered some great people. Many of them literally found their ministry niche from being a part of this program.

NEXT is far more than finding some unsuspecting fledgling to make coffee and do errands; it’s one of the few church intern programs that provides a real place for upcoming leaders to gain practical ministry and leadership experience by working first-hand with our teams. By working alongside seasoned leaders and team members, these interns are able to gain amazing real-world experiences not traditionally found in a classroom.

I’ll admit, being a college graduate, I used to ALWAYS suggest that people go through some type of higher learning—but times are a bit different these days. To gain both a greater understanding of how ministry actually happens AND to gain unique real-world experience, NEXT is pretty cool opportunity.

When we started giving away our creative resources, leadership info, and technical know-how via the Seeds website, it wasn’t long before we decided to extend this to an experiential opportunity for young leaders as well. With this in mind I thought it might be cool to hear from a few of our past interns who have found their ministry niche after being immersed in this world.

Amanda, Motion Designer


“I started my year as a production intern with only a few vague ideas about what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. Having always been interested in music, I had taken some college classes on audio engineering and recording. After finding that I enjoyed it, production seemed like a viable option. When I found out about the opportunity to do this at Church on the Move, I applied right away. I spent the year learning about every area of production from people who really knew their stuff, and actually discovered an unexpected area that I both enjoyed and was good at—video.

Over the next few years, I was given opportunities to pursue video at COTM, and now I have a career as a full-time motion designer. Working with the production team challenged me, helped me grow, and brought out gifts in me that I never would have imagined I’d have. I have no idea what I’d be doing today if I hadn’t done the internship, but I’m really glad I did!”

Michael, Production Manager


“Four years ago I was a volunteer at a church in Albuquerque, NM mixing sound and working with their production team. I was in a place in life where I wasn’t sure what my career path was going to be, but I knew I was passionate about serving the church and working in the production field.

I was lucky enough to be invited by my church to travel to Tulsa and attend Seeds Conference. On the second day of the conference I saw a video about the NEXT internship. I immediately knew it was something I wanted to be a part of.

During that year at COTM, I not only gained invaluable experience and training, but my walk with Christ was taken to a greater level.

During the year after the NEXT internship, I went from an impassioned volunteer to the production manager of a multi-site church.”

Carrington, Second-Year NEXT Apprentice


“When I first started this internship, I was this hyper immature kid with no organizational or communication skills. During my internship, I discovered quite quickly what I was terrible at. I struggled for a long while with where I fit into the production world and If I’m being honest, I wasn’t very technical which made me a little bit insecure. All in all, I wasn’t ready for the real world.

Thankfully, through some insightful advice and accountability from the leaders of COTM Production, I was able to grow more than I had ever thought possible. I went from being the kid that was the least likely to succeed, to being the first intern/apprentice to occupy the weekend stage manager position at our Central Campus.

I can definitely say that I have come a long way since then, and I have seen tremendous growth in myself throughout this internship. I am now in charge of scheduling volunteers for backstage areas and leading their development in becoming effective leaders backstage. I’ve become more organized, more intelligent, and more bold than I had ever been before this internship. My relationship with God has never been better, and I’ve made many lifelong friends along the way.”

Mitch, Youth Pastor


“As an intern, I wasn’t aware of how much my life would be changed by this experience. Through the opportunities that were put in front of me and the countless hours of knowledge poured into me by my leaders, I can honestly say that my time at COTM has had a lasting effect in shaping me to become the ministry leader that I am today.”

It’s so tremendous to see this sampling of NEXT interns now applying their talents in actual ministry experiences. They are making a difference and reaching people that we could never reach. Make no mistake, that’s what this whole church thing is all about.

If you’re interested in this OR have someone in your sphere that could benefit from this, please check it out and contact us at www.churchonthemove.com/next.

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Andrew Stone
Production Manager
Andrew Stone is the Production Manager and Audio Director at Church on the Move in Tulsa, OK. His 27 years of touring experience have brought a unique, and sometimes unorthodox, perspective to his approach towards production in the church. He has been a key part of changing the culture behind COTM's live events and he loves sharing his knowledge with other churches. He's been married for 20 years, rarely wears anything but black, and genuinely loves to rock. You can find him on Twitter (@stone_rocks), Instagram (stone.rocks), and is a blog contributor on Seeds, COTM's free resource site.