FISCAL YEAR 2019
There’s nothing like watching incarcerated men and women, with heads held high and graduation robes draped over prison uniforms, mark their completion of the Prison Fellowship Academy®—and, by God’s grace, the beginning of a hope-filled future.
Our founder Chuck Colson’s dream for restoring prisoners took the shape of a pilot program known as InnerChange Freedom Initiative (IFI) at Texas’ Carol S. Vance Unit more than 20 years ago. That original IFI, a powerful picture of God’s faithfulness, remains the model for 90 Prison Fellowship Academy sites in 28 states today. I’m thrilled that new sites are launching nearly every single month, bringing biblical principles and holistic restoration to people hungry for change.
As the Academy grows, so do our opportunities to reach more incarcerated men and women and their families than ever before. The cycle of renewal is continuing right before our eyes, as more parents sign up their children for Angel Tree®, and more corrections leaders are developing a transformative perspective through Warden Exchange®. Prison leaders are inviting us to host more Hope Events to bring Christian speakers, worship bands and singers, and fresh presentations of the Gospel to prison yards nationwide. Our new restorative art program, Create: New Beginnings™, co-authored by my wife and ministry partner Martha, is helping to heal the hurts of incarcerated women—a population that has often been overlooked.
Hope is abounding beyond the walls, too. From the historic, bipartisan passage of the FIRST STEP Act, to the overwhelming success of another nationwide Second Chance® Month, I am thrilled to see hearts softening toward those who are turning their lives around after paying their debt to society.
It’s an exciting time to be a part of Prison Fellowship®.
Doors are opening even faster than we can walk through them. With your faithful prayers and support and God’s leading, we will sustain this momentum going into the next fiscal year … and beyond! Thank you for joining us on this amazing mission.
For His Kingdom,
JAMES J. ACKERMAN
President and Chief Executive Officer