I thank God for men of God like Chuck Colson. I love this quote Fox News put in their article about his death.
"I shudder to think of what I'd been if I had not gone to prison," Colson said in 1993. "Lying on the rotten floor of a cell, you know it's not prosperity or pleasure that's important, but the maturing of the soul."
Ministries he founded:
“Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners . . . “ --Hebrews 13:3
Prison Fellowship is a national, nonprofit organization founded in 1976 by former Nixon aide Charles Colson. Colson was incarcerated for Watergate-related charges and could not forget those he had left behind prison walls. He launched Prison Fellowship to give prisoners the opportunity to experience the radically transforming power of Christ that he had already experienced.
Prison Fellowship’s mission is to seek the transformation of prisoners and their reconciliation to God, family, and community through the power and truth of Jesus Christ.
To best accomplish this mission, Prison Fellowship has created a holistic model called Transformational Ministry, which draws upon a number of coordinated and complementary programs and services. Prison Fellowship’s key method in accomplishing this mission is equipping and empowering local churches and volunteers to reach out to prisoners, ex-prisoners, and their families with the love and hope of Christ.
The Root Problem . . . The Root Solution
At its core, crime is a moral and spiritual problem. When people have distorted values and attitudes, they make poor moral choices that can cause harm and destruction.
Since the core problem is moral and spiritual, the core solution must also be moral and spiritual. Authentic and lasting change must take place from the inside out—beginning with a reconciled relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Then, as people learn more about the truth and power of Christ, they start to think in a new way, act in a new way, and relate to others in a new way.
What Does Prison Fellowship Do?
Prison Fellowship works with incarcerated men and women all over the U.S. and helps them prepare for release back into the community. Inside prison, volunteers and staff share the Gospel, disciple and mentor prisoners, and help them develop the life skills, social skills, and parenting skills that will increase their chances of success on the outside.
Through collaboration with other Christian ministries, Prison Fellowship’s Operation Starting Line (OSL) works to facilitate prison events throughout the U.S. These events involve musicians, performers, and speakers who share the hope of Christ. Volunteers mingle with prisoners, praying with them and offering encouragement.
Once prisoners are released, Prison Fellowship and its partners continue to walk alongside these men and women through the tough transitional stage. Newly released prisoners face huge challenges and stigma, and they’re especially vulnerable to relapse. Prison Fellowship emphasizes meeting both spiritual and practical needs to help ex-prisoners stay strong in their faith and successfully clear the reentry hurdles.
Through its Out4Life conferences held throughout the U.S., Prison Fellowship mobilizes local networks of churches and community organizations to help ex-prisoners find needed resources—such as housing, employment, and transportation—and needed relationships—such as mentors and a church family.
Through its Angel Tree® program, Prison Fellowship partners with thousands of churches to serve incarcerated parents and their families in the community—restoring broken bonds and protecting prisoners’ children from falling prey to the generational cycle of crime.