Christian Encounter Ranch has been Tending Lives and Training Leaders since 1970. We work with young people ages 16-25 who have backgrounds of abuse, neglect, drug usage, family breakdown, and general turmoil. CER offers internships for committed Christians age 21 and older who love the Lord and are eager to serve others. (United States citizenship is required.) Ministering to these hurting young people is both demanding and rewarding. Students experience rapid growth, and interns develop additional spiritual maturity and endurance. As servant-leaders, interns model the Christian life as they live and work alongside the students. A staff of committed Christian professionals who have had many years of residential ministry experience provide guidance for the intern team. New interns receive one week of orientation, verbal and written instruction, and helpful direction and advice from senior interns. Internships range from 90 days to 2 years.
Each intern disciples one to three students and teaches group Bible studies on a rotation basis. Interns are hard-working supervisors of the students and perform daily assignments that include practical activities–cooking, cleaning, and various maintenance tasks on our 86-acre campus (affectionately called “the Ranch”).
Interns also oversee a dorm room with two or three students. Many teachable moments arise during the daily activities as well as during recreation times (e.g. boating, swimming, fishing, hiking, ball games, “hanging out,” etc.). There are also various opportunities to minister in other ways according to interest and gifting.
Depending on length of stay, interns may accompany the students on a wilderness trip (under staff guidance) in the high country of the Sierras: a two-week late summer backpack trip which includes rock climbing and rappelling, and/or a 4-day winter snow trip. These experiences foster teamwork and character development, and nearly everyone who goes on a trip returns having heard from the Lord in a deep way.