The Corporal Works of Mercy are found in the teachings of Jesus and give us a model for how we should treat all others, as if they were Christ in disguise. One of the Corporal Works of Mercy – to visit the imprisoned – is at the heart of Prison Ministry programs.
Our parishes have offered different Prison Ministry programs in the past, but all had to cease with the arrival of the pandemic.
In an effort re-launch our Prison Ministry work, our Collaborative Service Commission is working with a local organization, Partakers, to help recruit mentors for their College Behind Bars program. Partakers pairs mentors with incarcerated men and women earning college degrees from Tufts University, Emerson College, Boston College, and Boston University.
The US has the highest incarceration rates in the world and spends $80 billion annually on prisons, only to have the majority of inmates return. Education is the single strongest factor in reducing recidivism, the rate at which people return to prison. Nationally, 44% return within one year of release, and 75% within five years. But for those who earned a degree while incarcerated, less than 5% ever return. As a mentor you can provide critical encouragement and model positive relationships with people on the outside.
What Does Being a Mentor Mean?
- Mentors form teams of 2-4 people per student
- Mentors write and visit in pairs once a month in a secure, open visiting room
- Mentors also check-in via email, letters or video calls
- No academic tutoring required! Mentors provide encouragement, support, and occasional research
If you’re interested in learning more about the program and what being mentor involves there will be a Zoom Info session on Thursday, November 30 at 7pm.
Please RSVP by completing the form available HERE
For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.
Matthew 25: 35-36