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“Justice that restores. What does that mean? Who are we restoring? Where are we restoring them to?”
Prison Fellowship President and CEO James Ackerman asks these questions to a recent gathering of volunteers in Tampa, Florida. The answer, he suggests, can be found in the words of the prophet Isaiah: “Learn to do right.
The written word. It has the muscle to enlarge minds.
To touch hearts.
To educate and inspire.
That’s why Mike Oliver collects and organizes books each week that will be sent to Florida prisoners.
But there’s another reason.
Five years ago, Oliver, 72, was incarcerated and knows how good it felt to receive reading material while serving time.
A version of this post appears on the Justice Fellowship website.
In 2015, an estimated 5.8 million Americans are denied their right to vote. Christian leaders who set policy should act to correct this affront on redemption, restoration, and hope in our communities.
What does it take to be a prison warden?
The answer to that question is rapidly shifting.
“Corrections has changed,” explains Warden Chris Hendry, Martin Correctional Institution (Indiantown, Florida). “We’re not ‘prison bosses’ anymore. We’re not in the same environment we used to be.”
Long-time visitors to this blog may remember the story of Davion Only. In 2013, the then-15-year-old Davion stepped in front of a church in Florida and asked if someone would adopt him.
Jesus never told His followers to “keep the faith;” He taught us “go into all the world” and make disciples. When we allow our faith to become insular, we miss out on all the joy of serving others and seeing their lives transformed by God’s grace.