American Baptist Women’s Ministries is addressing the topic of prison and aftercare ministries through its fourth virtual mission encounter for women in 2013, “For I Was in Prison and You Visited Me: Prison and Aftercare Ministries,” November 4-8, 2013. Virtual mission encounters can be done without leaving town and while still attending to family and work responsibilities. The virtual mission encounter includes emailed daily activities, a private blog with more information or reflections and to enable conversation among participants during the experience, and evening conference calls with special guests who have experience and direct engagement in the topic of the day.
“For I Was in Prison and You Visited Me” offers participants the opportunity to learn about preventative ministries with at-risk youth, ministries with incarcerated individuals and their families, and aftercare ministries with newly returned citizens, as well as exploring the restorative justice movement. Guests include Rev. Julia Moses, Associate Minister/Minister of Christian Education, Covenant Baptist Church and Chaplain of The Cleveland Clinic Foundation; Miriam Grady, volunteer with COTAAN, an aftercare ministry; Rev. Fela Barrueto, ABHMS national coordinator for Prisoner Re-Entry and Aftercare Ministry; and Lorraine Stutzman Amstutz, co-director of Mennonite Central Committee’s Office on Justice and Peacebuilding and author of several books on restorative justice.
AB Women’s Ministries Executive Director Virginia Holmstrom commented, “This is an issue that touches families and communities everywhere. Within any group of people—in a church or in an extended family—somebody knows someone, or is someone, that has been incarcerated. Here’s a chance to learn what’s at stake and how to walk alongside those that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 25.”
Registration for the “For I Was in Prison and You Visited Me” five-day virtual mission encounter is $30 per person; deadline for registration is October 31, 2013. More information and online registration is available at www.abwministries.org, click on “Events.”