Mentors, Friends, and the Practice of Letting Love In



By Laura Hernandez

One of the best but also stretching parts of the Capital Fellows program for me is how intentionally mentored each of us are from all corners of the program. That might seem like a really strange thing to say, especially since the opportunity to be mentored so closely during this season is such a precious gift. Most of us participated in some sort of campus ministry in college, and therefore have experienced Christian mentorship in at least some capacity. But this year in Fellows gives each of us such a neat chance to receive mentorship from a broad range of incredible individuals that have taken the time and energy to deeply invest in each of us.


Starting with our protectively caring, steadfast leaders, John Kyle and Lauren Stephens keep us grounded as a group and as individuals, guiding us through our journey in our year as Fellows. We are each assigned a personal mentor as well, members of the MPC/Capital Fellows community who take time out of their busy schedules to grab coffee or dinner and to chat about all things ranging from how our day was to our hopes and dreams for the future. Host family relationships can also offer a unique and special space for mentorship, which has absolutely been the case for me (shout out to my incredibly wonderful host mom, Nancy!). As a Fellows class, we’ve also been sectioned into peer counseling groups, where we have the opportunity to both take part in receiving and showing more intentional, attentive care to each other in smaller groups.


All of these different mentoring and counseling relationships (and I haven’t even mentioned them all!) are just a testament to how well cared for each of us really are. We are given so many spaces to share about our lives and our experiences this year with so many who are patient to listen and also who speak truth back to us. But I did mention that this part of Fellows can sometimes feel a bit stretching for me. As an introvert who doesn’t always love the idea of talking about my most personal experiences (especially the harder ones), the practice of learning to lean into that vulnerability in so many different relationships of mentorship and friendship can sometimes feel a little intimidating.


But this practice has also proven to be one of the most important anchoring points in my life this year. All these different, steadying relationships mesh together into a truly incredible community that is the Capital Fellows. And this community offers such a sweet reminder that God chooses to show his fatherly love for us through the people he builds in and around our life to care for us and show us that we are not alone. But even sweeter than that, I think, is the reminder that, even greater than these present mentoring relationships, is the promise the Lord has made to stay right by our side both in the present and in our tomorrows, too. A few weeks ago, I was helping one of my third grade Sunday school friends memorize Joshua 1:9, and I was hit by a powerful reminder of that exact truth:


Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. – Joshua 1:9



Pictures from the Week



Low quality selfie, high quality girl gang!


Weekend dinner hangs!


A particularly brilliant sunset spotted while strolling through Georgetown. Definitely made my heart skip a beat.


Happy, silly fellows :)






Become a Capital Fellow...Or Recommend Someone


We are in the final stages of putting together the 2020-21 Capital Fellows class and would love to hear from you!

Capital Fellows is a leadership and vocational development program for recent college graduates. It's a 9-month program that includes a paid job in your field of interest, service in the church and city, a personal mentor, vocational coaching, life with a host family, and customized seminary courses to help you grow in your walk with the Lord in all areas of life.

Capital Fellows is a unique and powerful way to launch your career, find Christian community in a vibrant church, and to get started in post-college life in the Washington DC area. To apply click here.



Benefits of The Fellows Initiative


You probably already know that Capital Fellows is one of 31 fellows programs in The Fellows Initiative network. But, did you know that the sponsors of TFI offer great benefits to Capital Fellows alumni? For example, Reformed Theological Seminary offers a 33% tuition discount for 5 years, and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary offers a 40% tuition discount! You can learn more about TFI's sponsors by clicking here.


If you know of a graduate school, seminary, employer, or other organization that would be interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact TFI by clicking here. Thanks!



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McLean Presbyterian Church  |  1020 Balls Hill Road  |  McLean, Virginia 22101  |  Email: fellows@mcleanpres.org

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