Traditionally the State Committee and the 17 Local Committees have focused on Chaplains meeting with inmates inside State Prisons, County Jails and Youth Facilities. This is essential work. And yes, our Chaplains do an amazing job of healing and sharing Science and Health with the inmates and even the guards and other prison workers they meet.
The need for “keeping crime in check” and ultimately healing the underpinnings of criminal thinking is the real goal. And while we pray to see an end to any form of incarceration, there are four important ways you and/or your church or organization can be involved in this healing and redemptive ministry work. You can:
- Volunteer to help “at risk” youth in your community. The majority of new inmates entering our prisons and jails are youth between the ages of 18-25. And mostly these youth comes from “broken” homes or dysfunctional families. Can you see yourself spending time with an “at risk” youth in your community, leading by Christian example to help them make better choices? And maybe help them find a higher purpose in life? What an impact you could make showing youth they are cared for and loved? If this touches your heart, consider joining with a volunteer organization in your community that serves youth. Our prison populations won’t decline until we finally turn off the flow of youth from our communities currently filling our prisons and jails.
- Volunteer to become a Christian Science Chaplain or Chaplain’s Assistant. If you’ve had Christian Science Class Instruction and are eager to apply what you know of the power of spiritual prayer as taught by Jesus, to heal and save, then prayerfully consider being a Christian Science Chaplain or Chaplain’s Assistant. It’s not hard to apply–just go to the “Forms” section of this site. There are men, women and youth in “mental prisons” who need to be “set free” right now.
- Volunteer to become a “Representative” to your local institutional committee. Being a Representative of your church requires your board or executive committee to appoint you to this position. If you’re interested in being a Representative to your local institutional committee then let your Clerk know about it. Once you are appointed to serve, you will be responsible for communicating the Christly work being accomplished now to congregation of your Branch Church. But that’s not all. Representatives are also “practitioners”. They prayer for and support the Chaplains serving in area institutions when they go. Your prayers are indispensable to the success of your local committee’s ongoing ministry work.
- Volunteer to help those recently released from prison or jail to transition successfully back into the community. People who have spent time in prison don’t usually “transition” easily back into society. In many cases inmates have spent years behind bars, in a highly structured environment. And in most cases, they’re unprepared for life, and successful decision-making on the outside. Statistically speaking, about 2/3 of those released today will re-offend and return to prison–accounting for California’s high “recidivism” rate. Please consider volunteering for a local re-entry program in your area. A fair number of local churches offer help to those recently released. What a great way to help people when they’re the most vulnerable, just by letting your light shine.
- Volunteer to Adopt-a-Prison…in your prayers. The prisons, jails and youth facilities in your area need your consistent prayers. Consider forming a “prayer team” at your Church or Society dedicated to praying for the peace, harmony and reduction of criminal activity inside the prison walls. If you would like to help, contact your local County Sheriff to learn what specific institutions need your prayerful attention, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a knack for research? Have a few spare hour each week and want to volunteer? Good. We want to hear from you. This website is data intensive. Our maps, our contact information and the statistics we provide to our readers have to be accurate and up to date. If you’re interested, the State Committee is seeking researchers to help:
- Track down data about our State prisons, county jails and youth facilities.
- Update our contact information for each prison, jail and youth facility in the state.
- Update our contact information for Sheriffs, Head Chaplains, Wardens and more.
- Find important stories to share on our website.
Contact David Fowler (Editor) directly at 760-822-2133 to learn more.