During the grey months of January and February in Wittenberg, the Old Latin School was blessed by the aid, efforts, and enthusiasm given by Ethan Stoppenhagen, our most recent ILSW intern. Originally from Ossian, Indiana, Stoppenhagen studies Classics and German at Valparaiso University. He has been able to make use of his two months off before his start at University of Tübingen, where he will be studying for the spring term through an exchange program. Stoppenhagen has been a valuable asset to the Managing Director Kristin Lange during this time of year when visits are fewer, but office work and programming abound.
What led you to pursue an internship with the ILSW? “An interest in participating in a Gospel outreach mission in Germany lead me to pursue this internship. Since I intend to be a pastor with thoughts about becoming a missionary, I saw this as an opportunity to “get my feet wet” with mission work.”
What does your position as intern include? “What doesn’t it include?! Since the ILSW is still new and growing, my position has included a lot of foundational development for the organization. For example, I have helped develop a brand with logos, letterhead, and brochure for both the ILSW and the OLS. I have also had the opportunity to help brainstorm potential programs for the ILSW to put on. But I also have taken out the trash, prepared worship and meeting spaces for guests, and given tours. There’s a little bit of everything!”
How has living at the Old Latin School helped you understand the purpose of the ILSW? “Living at the Old Latin School has helped me understand that the ILSW is always on-call. One never knows when or why someone might ring the doorbell, and opportunities to share experiences and the Gospel come with each ring.”
What has surprised you most about moving into the Old Latin School? “Most surprising for me has been the varying levels of personal interaction that occur in house. Sometimes there is a large group with many people to interact with, while there are days when the onl
y interaction is with Kristin.”
What is a neat thing you have learned about Wittenberg? “I have gotten to learn a lot about the relationship between the Reformation and education in Germany and its effects especially on LCMS education, which has been fascinating!”