An Interview with Michaelene Miller

by Caroline Minor on September 4, 2014
This August, we welcomed Michaelene Miller to St. Margaret’s as our new youth leader. In an effort to help us get to know Michaelene a little better, I asked her to answer a few questions about herself.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas!

Q: What has been your favorite experience from everything you have done in the Church?
A: Out of all my experiences in the Church, my favorite would have to be a tie between my work as the Summer Staff Coordinator at Camp Mitchell in the summer of 2013 and my experience living and working in the Episcopal Service Corps’ Deaconess Anne House Program in St. Louis, MO last year. Both of these experiences come out on top because of the fantastic communities that I lived with and learned from.  In their own unique ways, they each revolved around a love and understanding that created safe places for confrontation and growth.

Q: What are you looking forward to most about being a youth leader?
A: As a youth leader, I am most looking forward to creating a space for the youth of the Church where I hope that they are comfortable enough to really be who they are because they feel accepted…a place to play and ask the hard questions, a place that goes beyond the walls of St. Margaret’s that will help them to experience religion in the midst of all that they go through on a daily basis, a place to develop and celebrate their identities as both teens and young Episcopalians. 

Q: What was your favorite thing about youth when you were a youth member?
A: When I was in high school I joined a youth group out of Trinity Cathedral that met in the Dreamland Ballroom in downtown Little Rock. I think that the exposure to issues of environmental sustainability and the practice of meditative prayer during those meetings greatly affected the formation of my identity.  I looked forward to the end of each session when we would journey upstairs to the unfinished ballroom, walk past the large words “No judgment shall pass” chalked on the wall, sit in a circle on the stage around a candle with the lights out, and shared whatever stress was on our hearts that week. I found that those moments of vulnerability and meditative silence that followed were really revitalizing.

Q: We've heard you are planning on going to Seminary next year. What do you hope to do in your future?
A: I hope to help build communities centered in God’s love for all.

Q: What is your favorite saying or figure of speech?
A: “Yikes!” …We all make mistakes or trip over our own feet sometimes…I like to say a “yikes,” laugh a little, remind myself that God still loves me, and carry on.

Q: What is your favorite color?
A: My favorite color is coral!

Q: What story does your family always tell about you?
A: Oh, there is a wide range. One that came to my father’s mind today was when he was taking all of the old carpet up from our previous house, stripping the floors down to the hardwood, because my older brother, Michael, was having asthmatic problems. He said that at the age of 2 or 3 years old, I refused to let him take the carpet out of my room, because I insisted that it would keep my brother out of my space. That one makes me laugh.
Q: If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
A: If I could live anywhere it would be in a cozy, lakefront cabin that also happened to have warm, hurricane free beach a little ways down the road on one side, a forest covered mountain with great views and hiking trails down the way on the other side, and a medium sized city that emphasized community and farmers’ markets in the not too far off distance.  It’s got to exist somewhere, right? No explanation needed.

Read more about our Celebrations:
More than a New Look for Williams Hall
On Connecting the Dots...