Mitchell Martin and I had coffee together recently and our conversation was wide ranging – everything from electronic dance music to Christian superheroes, to the Gospel of Mark and Exodus. He had just completed the Diocesan Discovery Group to explore a call to ministry. At 21, Mitchell, was the youngest in the group but not by much, as there were others in their 20’s – a great sign for the Church!
One of the passages they studied that particularly resonated for Mitchell were the temptations of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark. “Being a Christ follower – a Christian – I sometimes feel like an alien in a foreign land, like an immigrant who speaks a different language.” Mitchell wears a strikingly handsome and strong cross every day and he wears it to show to whom he belongs and to whom he is faithful. “But,” he says, “not everyone stays committed to Christ when it is difficult, which is a shame.”
Mitchell would like to be a pastor of a non-denominational church because, he said, “I am a Christ follower and I want to be connected to all Christians, not just one branch.” I shared that I, too, want to be connected to all Christians, but I also like to have a home. It’s comforting and important to be a part of a family- and still, also know that you are a part of the whole human race. So, I like that I have an Episcopal home, even as I am part of the whole Christian tradition. Mitchell smiled, “Someday, I will be Pastor Mitchell – and I will have a hopping, dancing congregation! I’m working on developing Christian electronic dance music.” I invited him to preach some Sunday – and he agreed. I think we may have some dance music as part of the sermon that Sunday!
One of the classes he is taking at Monterey Peninsula College is The Bible as Literature. “It’s great stuff,” he says. “We are using the New Oxford University edition.” Being an English major certainly complements his writing and his desire to be a pastor. In addition to college, and music, Mitchell is working on a graphic novel, in which every chapter is its own series. One chapter is on superheroes and Christianity. “Superheroes,” says Mitchell, “often have Christian qualities, compassion and a willingness to sacrifice on behalf of others.” The difference is that when Christian superheroes are thanked for their service, they point to God, and say, “thanks goes to God – His Son, Jesus Christ, is the true Savior.”
Mitchell’s tag is #Jesusismysuperhero. You can find him on Instagram, FB and at church. He’s one of our crucifers and lectors and an all around great guy.