ABOUT US

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OUR TEAM

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LEAH SWANK

PARTNERSHIP COORDINATOR – OKLAHOMA
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As I was finishing my junior year in college, I was looking for a ministry internship that was different than my previous ministry experience. The summer prior I was fortunate enough to travel to the Philippines with an organization focused on sharing the Gospel in the schools in Manila. It was there that I got a small taste of what I felt like the Lord was calling me to do with my life. As exciting as it was to share the Gospel with students overseas, I wanted to see if I could do the same in my own country. I found Next Step and was able to serve in Crownpoint, New Mexico and before graduating college, I got the opportunity to intern for a second year in Moore, Oklahoma. Two words: GAME CHANGER.

 

A year before Next Step arrived in Oklahoma, the city of Moore was devastated by a massive tornado. Prepared to see an abundance of crushed homes and empty lots, my team and I found something much different. Much of the tornado clean up had already been completed, but the post traumatic stress was still very much alive. Moore was a community in need of intentional, Christ-centered relationships. As we began to partner with local non-profits in both Moore and the downtown OKC area, the way they lived and worked in such a way as to make a Kingdom impact, while also helping their neighbors amazed me. The community and it’s people had become like family to me in such short time and I couldn’t picture myself staying put back home for long.

 

When the summer had ended and I was finishing up my last semester, I found myself visiting Moore so much more than I was ever visiting home. The more I visited, the harder it was to leave. Fast forward six months later and I found myself making my first move to Tulsa, followed by a final transplant to where I am today- in OKC.

 

When I think about what the PC role means to me, I feel a combination of excitement and humility. I think it was in Spiderman (or some other superhero movie) where the cute old uncle says, “With great power, comes great responsibility.” That is how I view this community. It has become so special to me and I feel a great deal of responsibility in helping to continue the development that has already been taking place over the last few years. When I take a step back, I can clearly see the Lord’s hand in placing me in this position, and am extremely confident in trusting that He is going to do great work in this city in the years to come!