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Weddings NOT Funerals

After reading this article in the Baltimore Sun, 18-year-old man shot and killed by Baltimore police during pursuit, I was exasperated. The judge had provided leniency for this young man in court one day and he was killed the next after making the choice to return to the game. We never had the opportunity to…

The God Ask

An invitation: At unCUFFED we have been seeking God’s wisdom to stay on His path, not our own. We have prayed for opportunities to serve and He has been faithful to open doors at an increasing number of facilities. We have prayed for volunteers and they are being supplied. The last component is financial resources.…

Does God Love a Murderer

As violence increases in Baltimore and Maryland we are called to minister to more and more young men who have committed heinous crimes. We say that we understand and practice the unconditional love of Jesus Christ but there are times when we are scared or even repulsed by the actions of the boys we serve.…

Quads & Fellowship in a new facility

Last week, we received approval to start work in a new facility, the Baltimore City Correctional Center. We continue to work with juveniles being held in the City’s Pretrial Wyatt building but BCCC is a new facility for us. BCCC is a minimum security facility downtown that houses inmates sentenced to time in the Department…

Being a spark to ignite the fire!

There is a stark difference between prison and everyday society. Each facility we work in is different, often influenced by the socioeconomic makeup of the area and the severity of the crimes committed by the boys. The morale of the boys also varies from facility to facility. In one, roaches often grace the floors of…

Walking in Gideon’s Footsteps

I’ve been reading Judges 7 and thinking about Gideon. He was camped out near the Midian enclave with 32,000 men ready to attack but God had another idea. If Gideon won the battle with those overwhelming numbers God knew that Israel would be boastful saying “My own power has delivered me.” God stripped them down…

Oh Holy Night

It’s easy to be discouraged working with our boys. Are they hearing, believing, understanding, or trusting us? We pray and prepare only to find guys on lock-up, having a bad day, or being disruptive by walking out of class or choosing this hour to pick a fight with their co-defendant. Recently, we challenged the boys…

Lifelines

When a 17 year old boy writes out his life story it should be filled with summer camp stories, high school antics, sports teams and their big games, falling in love, hard work in school, plans for the future, and a discovery of his faith in a Creator. Sadly, for the boys we work with…

What’s in a name?

Sometimes I struggle when I try to explain to others what it is, exactly, that I do here in my role with unCUFFED. When I’m speaking to church folks, the easiest connection for me to make is ‘youth ministry.’ I mean, that’s essentially what I am doing: I am building relationships with kids, hopefully encouraging…

Grateful for Re-connections

You often hear the good stories from us of young men and women who are making choices to change their lives but prison ministry, especially with kids, can be an uphill struggle at times. For every kid we make a connection with, another one walks away. The lure of the street and the easy money…