A Reflection on REC from a New REC Volunteer

[Webmaster’s note: minor modifications have been made to this content. Names and certain details have been changed for privacy, security and compliance reasons. The revised text is substantially similar to that provided by Marie (not her real name).] It is Pentecost weekend when we visit, a maximum-security men’s prison in Western NY.  I thought my purpose was to be the hands and heart of God to these men, but what I did not expect is that I would witness a faith far deeper than my own in these “men in green.” The men refer to us as “those from the outside.” We “outsiders” truly felt the divide between this walled prison and our Western New York neighborhoods, once the gate locks behind us. But for three days we create a sanctuary in the prison gym, where the outsiders and the men in green, are Christians united in faith and a shared conviction: Christ’s message of love and forgiveness. I experience the Spirit profoundly, deeply, and densely. As the rookie of the team, I work the morning registration desk for three days. Each day at 8:30am,   eighteen, humble men walk to the table to check in and receive their name tags. We serve lots of fresh coffee, and our REC team lines up to greet them when they arrive.   Hospitality at its best. He registered his name as Righty on Day 1 and 2.  But on Day 3, he registers his […]

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