cf_logo_ol_vert_rev

Community Freedom equips the local church to transition returning citizens from confinement to freedom through the planting of church locations in prisons.

A MISSION FIELD IN OUR OWN BACKYARD

  • 2.2 million Americans are confined in prisons
  • 700,000 Americans are released from prisons every year
  • 67% will re-offend within 3 years of release
  • Children with an incarcerated family member are 70% more likely to be involved in the criminal justice system
  • Nearly 3 million children in the U.S. have an incarcerated parent (1 in 28)
  • Incarceration is costing the U.S. economy $6 billion dollars/yr

Research is beginning to help us understand the importance of religious influences in protecting people from harmful outcomes as well as promoting beneficial and pro-social outcomes. This beneficial relationship is not simply a function of religion’s constraining function or what it discourages – opposing drug use or delinquent behavior – but also through what it encourages: promoting behaviors that can enhance purpose, well-being, or educational attainment.

Dr. Byron R. Johnson. More God Less Crime, p. 183

Our 2-part Vision

Part 1: finding your way back to God

Community Christian Church, in partnership with Alpha and NewThing, has a 2-part vision for helping offenders. Part 1 is to help them find their way back to God. When we find our way back to God, we experience a freedom that can only be found in Jesus, and we are welcomed into a community of Christ-followers. This is accomplished through 3 key relationships:

  • Celebrate – Our relationship with God through weekly services
  • Connect – Our relationship with others through small groups and gatherings
  • Contribute – Our relationship with the world through discovering and using our gifts to help others

Part 2: Re-entry into the local community

Our second objective is to ensure that an offenders’ re-entry into a local community is one that helps them continue to experience the freedom they found in Christ while in prison. Best practices for re-entry indicate that programs must start prior to release and be connected to community resources. This will be accomplished through a coordinated effort that includes a vast network of churches connected to COMMUNITY NewThing, and Alpha. These churches will have access to the training and expertise that Alpha Prisons can provide in working with offenders upon their release. In addition, local churches will also use field-tested training and equipping resources including the Alpha Course and Finding Your Way Back to God.

PROCESS

A broadcast delay of weekend worship services from COMMUNITY will be delivered to the prison along with weekly Big Idea small group curriculum. Utilizing these resources, a local church will start a new church inside a prison led by a trained pastor and key volunteers under the authority of the prison Chaplain.

The local church will provide all approved audio/visual equipment, curriculum and be responsible for any additional costs of the program. Weekly topics will concentrate on the immediate needs of offenders as well as themes essential for successful re-entry: Character Development, Anger Management, Addiction Prevention Family/Child Relationships Daily Living Skills. In addition, our hope is that eventually, family members will have access to the same worship service as the offender via the internet.

PARTNERSHIP

COMMUNITY reaches over 10,000 people through its 11 locations in Chicagoland. NewThing includes a vast network of over 1200 churches worldwide. Alpha USA influences over 7000 churches in the US. This collaborative effort of COMMUNITY, NewThing, and Alpha provides a unique opportunity to not only start hundreds of churches in prisons, but also offer exceptional training and resources to local churches all over the U.S. for successful re-entry. Leveraging the strengths of COMMUNITY, Alpha Prison & Re-entry and NewThing Network, Community Freedom’s holistic approach provides an opportunity for individuals to find their way back to God through Celebration Services and small group programs while incarcerated as well as re-entry support and connection to a local church community as they return home. To learn more about our Launch Plan and Launch Essentials, click the downloads below. For more information on getting involved, please fill out the form.

Contact
Amy Plummer
Community Christian Church
(630) 296-7554 
email Amy

Bruce Paulus
Alpha Division of Prisons & Re-entry
(937) 621-1930  email Bruce

ccc_logo_200px_rev
newthing_200px_rev
alpha-logo_175px_rev

Contact
Amy Plummer
Community Christian Church
(630) 296-7554 
email Amy

Bruce Paulus
Alpha Division of Prisons & Re-entry
(937) 621-1930  email Bruce

ccc_logo_200px_rev
newthing_200px_rev
alpha-logo_175px_rev
%d bloggers like this: