Jenny, though born in Pennsylvania, has spent the majority of her formative years living smack dab in the middle of North Carolina, surrounded by neither beach nor mountains. The daughter of a pastor, she grew up learning what it means to follow God’s call wherever that may lead (even if it leads to the cornfields of Indiana, where Jenny lived for a few years as a child, but she is hoping that will not happen twice in her lifetime).
She is blessed to be the youngest of four very prodigious and talented daughters. Jenny describes her sisters as her closest friends and greatest teachers. She graduated in May from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in English and anthropology, and is happy to have been so promptly employed.
Jenny characterizes her faith journey as one of a pathological sinner. God really flexed his grace and mercy muscles when teaching Jenny to trust and follow him. These are lessons she hopes to continually be taught while working at Sojourners and living in community with the other interns. She is extremely excited to learn how to better love her neighbors and engage in politics through the lens of biblical justice. She hopes to do a lot of reading, baking, and playing with babies in her spare time.
Articles By This Author
Moral Mondays: A Cry for the Old North State
It’s true that by some standards I am not North Carolinian, nor or am I Southern. I was not born there — I have no extended family there. I don’t speak with a drawl. And I don’t (gasp!) like sweet tea or Cheerwine.
But after 14 birthdays, nine years in the public education system, four years at UNC-Chapel Hill, countless pounds of barbecue, numerous trips to the Appalachians and the Outer Banks, and many lifetime milestones — including voting for the first time! — passed in that beautiful state, it is now the closest thing to home I know.
What Are You Singing: O! Holy Night
I can remember hearing several times as a middle and high schooler that Christians lie the most when they sing. These claims generally came from the mouths of college-aged worship leaders during emotional praise segments at mission camps and conferences. They were usually followed up with a heartfelt plea to raise honest words and promises to God during the next song. (And if we really meant it, we would ignore the burning stares of our judgmental, worldly peers and come down front for our seventh altar call.)
Though I generally don’t remember these scenes and indictments fondly, I have recently been contemplating the idea of honest worship, especially in relation to the Christmas season. I mean, how often do we memorize a whole song and sing along to it regularly without really stopping to contemplate the lyrics? And even when we do realize what we’re singing, how often do we actually let those words transform our hearts or actions or perspectives?
All of these thoughts started stewing in my mind during my Thanksgiving vacation two weeks ago. Per usual, I started playing Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving (and by the day after I mean a few days before). As I was washing dishes, belting out my favorite version of “O! Holy Night,” I was suddenly struck with the thought What am I singing? Read the lyrics below to see if you get what I mean. (Hint: my moment happened somewhere around the second verse.)