Don't Lose Your Mind
A MESSAGE ON THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Prison Fellowship® has been serving prisoners, former prisoners, and their families for more than 40 years. Our vision is to see all those affected by crime and incarceration restored to God, to their families, and to their communities. While the current public health situation will temporarily affect some of our programs, our commitment to that vision is unwavering. We will continue to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ into prisons however we can, advocate for a more restorative criminal justice system, support second chances, and work to support and strengthen families with a parent in prison.
"In my favorite prison movie, Shawshank Redemption," says Ron Humphrey, "Andy Dufresne, the lead character, says, 'Get busy living or get busy dying.' I guess that's what drove me on while in prison; I wanted to live."
When the four o'clock whistle blows, that's quitting time at the prison factory. But what's the plan for the rest of the evening? Five hours sitting in the dayroom watching television? On the outside, we call that being a "couch potato."
—The Shawshank Redemption
GET BUSY LIVING
What are some alternatives to watching television? Can you go back to your cell/dorm/cubicle and read a good book? Attend a class over at the education department? Visit the lonely and quiet library? Write encouraging letters to your family? Do crossword puzzles or learn to play chess?
Sometimes fellow prisoners can be your best teachers. "During my nine years in a federal facility, one friend taught me to juggle using tennis balls from the recreation department," Ron recalls.
DON'T LOSE YOUR MIND
In-prison programming is a great way for prisoners to not only fill their time but make the most out of it. Local colleges also have found ways to bring study programs into prison. But remember, no one will make you participate. You decide whether you will feed or starve your brain in prison.
"I just kept busy," Ron says. "I would have gone crazy without something to do."
After Ron's release in 1990, he decided to stay busy, finding work and hobbies to keep him from sitting idle … and getting into trouble. "I've stayed busy ever since."
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