The Life of a Music Intern
Josh Stagni '05

Josh Stagni '05Have you ever wondered what it would be like to work alongside Steve and Karen as colleagues in Campus Ministry? Well, with the internship in liturgical music you can do just that. This position started a few years ago and I am the third to hold the name of music intern. I share an office with the three non-music interns and live in community with them as well. I attend CM staff meetings. I also attend Folk Choir staff meetings to plan the music for each liturgy. I work with the dorm music commissioners, the Folk Choir as chaplain and percussionist, the Celebration Choir, and in a praise band for the Catholic fellowship Four:7. I also was on the team for an NDE Retreat and design posters for Theology on Tap. Two big projects I have worked on with Steve are a new supplement for the Gather books and an online prayer service called ND Prayercast. And there are many other little things I do around the office as well.

As you can see, this is not a lax position. There is much work to be done and I have been an integral part of important programs we have here in Campus Ministry. The workload can certainly be exhausting and challenging at times. But I really love it. As chaplain of the choir I write weekly prayers, combining the readings for the upcoming week often with lyrics from a song we will be singing that same week. This can be tough to do, to connect all this into something that will be a good reflection and challenge each choir member to think about our faith and ministry. But it is probably my favorite part of each week.

One of the best aspects of the internship is the chance to work in ministry. I basically have been given a test drive as a full-time campus minister. Notre Dame is a great place to learn how to minister and I have been blessed with wonderful colleagues and a great work environment. I have been mentored by Steve and Karen, but also by others who have nothing to do with music. As the music intern, I really get the best of both worlds—music and non-music ministry.

I graduated from Notre Dame with two degrees—one in Computer Science and one in Theology. I have tried to figure out which direction I felt called for my career. I came into the internship hopeful that this experience would help me discern my career path. And did it ever! I love ministry! I love working with others—from staff to students. I really feel called to lay ministry and specifically working in campus ministry at some college or university. I applied to graduate school here at Notre Dame for the Master of Divinity program next fall—a three-year theology degree that incorporates academics and ministry in the form of a field placement each year. And just before spring break I found out that I was accepted! To say I'm excited would be an understatement. I think this is the best way for me to continue to hone my ministerial skills and theological knowledge and prepare me to be an even better minister. But Steve and Karen may have been even more excited to know that one of their percussionists and tenors will be around for another three years.

The internship has been full of great opportunities. The Prayercast project has given me a great way to integrate my technology skills with ministry and is something I will hopefully continue to work on while I am still at ND. But the greatest opportunity has been the chance to mentor students inside and outside of choir. These relationships made have been just amazing and is really the heart of ministry. One specific example is my chance to train the younger percussionists and pass on the torch, which brings me so much joy. Ministry is built on serving others. I am very grateful to have been the intern this year—to give my time and talents to the wonderful people who work and study at this incredible university. And I look forward to continuing to minister in the choir as a member and to continue on my faith journey, helping others on the same path and being helped by them along the way.