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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 127302 Find in a Library
Title: Convict Converts: Evangelism in the Cellblocks
Journal: Corrections Compendium  Volume:10  Issue:12  Dated:(June 1986)  Pages:1,8-13
Author(s): R Welch
Date Published: 1986
Page Count: 7
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Every month, representatives of more than 1500 religious organizations work to spread the word of their various gospels to prison inmates. Despite the apparent incongruity of this phenomenon, prison ministry is increasing.
Abstract: The best-known and fastest growing group is Prison Fellowship, founded by former White House official Chuck Colson in 1976. In spite of its volunteer and apparently laudable nature, there are many critics of the prison ministry movement, including security officers and prison officials concerned about the strain on security created by outsiders, prisoners who do not value the spiritual attention they receive, and even church organizations who question the methods used by largely evangelical volunteer groups. Some groups use mass conversions to raise funds for their operations. Despite the criticisms, prison ministry has changed many inmates' lives through their conversions. Prison ministry programs often become involved in public policy debates over prison reform. Groups representing other religions and movements also enter the prisons to provide for the needs of their congregants. An essential part of any prison ministry must be follow-up work to help released inmates readjust to society.
Main Term(s): Inmate religious affiliation; Religious programs
Index Term(s): Volunteer programs
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