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Assistance coming for ex-convicts

Assistance coming for ex-convicts

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Persons having difficulty being rehabilitated following incarceration and other social troubles will soon be able to receive assistance with the establishment of two new ministries.{{more}}

The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Prison Fellowship, which was launched here in November last year, is expected to hold elections for an executive this weekend at the Chebar Evangelical Assembly, at Rose Place, on Saturday, March 5, at 7 pm.

The executive, which will govern the affairs of the organization, is expected to reflect the various religious bodies involved in prison ministry in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Representative from Prison Fellowship International Akililu Tadessa is scheduled to be at Saturday’s elections.

Prison Fellowship, which was founded by ex-prisoner Charles Colson in the United States in 1976, reaches out to prisoners, ex-prisoners and their families, as an act of service to Jesus Christ and as a contribution to restoring peace to communities.

In December last year, the organization held its first Angel Tree Drive, during which toys and other gifts were distributed to the children and family members of incarcerated men and women.

Saturday’s elections will be followed by a press conference on Monday, and the local chapter is expected to be chartered later this year.

Meanwhile, another organization with similar objectives is expected open office doors later this month.

The Set Free Ministry, which reaches out to ex-inmates, drug addicts and the homeless, has secured office space in Lodge Village, just outside of Kingstown.

As a start, Set Free is expected to hold counseling sessions, Bible study and other services for ex inmates, drug addicts and other social outcasts who have decided to make life and lifestyle changes.

Plans are underway for the planting of a Set Free church here, as well as a youth ministry, and a ‘ranch’, where persons can learn trades and receive further assistance.

Set Free, another organization which originated in the United States, was started by a former gang member and prisoner, Phil Aguilar, in California.

The decision to establish a Set Free branch here came following the visit of veteran church planter and this country’s prison ministry pioneer Pastor Don Overstreet. (JJ)