October 2019 - Pray for the Prison College
Arkansas Baptists are part of something that will bless an untold number of folks in the future: the prison college that started at the Arkansas Department of Correction Varner Unit in late August 2019.
Twenty-Five men began their work on a four-year accredited degree in Christian Ministry provided by Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary, based in Memphis. Dr. Mark Thompson is the college director. Twenty-five more men will join their ranks in the fall of 2020, and the same will happen every year in the foreseeable future! The goal will be to graduate 25 men with their bachelor’s degrees each year!
Please pray for:
- Dr. Thompson. He directs the college, serves as an instructor, and facilitates the video classes that he does not personally teach.
- The men. Most of the men are serving life or very long sentences. Most of them have not done school-type work in years. Pray that God gives them the mindset they need to complete their course work well.
- Moral Rehabilitation / Field Ministry: The main goal is the moral rehabilitation of inmates. Many of the graduates will qualify, upon graduation, to become “Field Ministers.” They will be assigned to prison units all over the state, working for the warden and the unit chaplain to impact the lives of inmates and their rehabilitation. Moral rehabilitation helps a person change their heart so that, for lifers, they can live in a calm prison, and for those that will get out, they return to society with a changed heart that is not inclined to re-offend. Prisons that have adopted the field-ministry model see assault on prison officers plummet, offenses against fellow inmates drop significantly, and suicides drop. Pray that God will prepare the graduates to be excellent field ministers and impact their fellow inmates with the heart changing message of the gospel.
- The Lord to raise up what is needed to start a similar program for women.
- The finances needed!
If you have any questions, email Bob Fielding on the ABSC Missions Team.