As we enter this special time of thankfulness, we remember all He has done this year. With grateful hearts, we give glory to God for all He is doing in the hearts of our women.
Terry and Jean Strom moved to Texas eight years ago to join Discipleship Unlimited. The Lord has opened doors above and beyond! Many have received freedom and healing through their Christ-centered recovery group at Woodman State Jail.
They both minister in our Faith-Based Dorms, and Jean is attending a seminar to help equip offenders to prepare for the job market. Terry is our worship leader.
We love the joy of worshiping with those behind the fences. Keep Terry and Jean in your prayers as they press on to take the prize ...
Meet Lori Riggs, graduate of the Hobby Faith-Based Dorm!
Accountant, Toyota dealership East Texas Volunteer for Texas Department of Criminal Justice Volunteer Grace House of Cedar Creek Lake
Lori was rescued from darkness into a new life in Christ Jesus. She spent five years in prison where she was set free. She was a leader in our faith dorm at Hobby. She has a passion for telling others of the amazing work the Lord has done. Her story is now published in a book along with seven of her friends.
She has shared at the Henderson County Jail and is a leader in Celebrate Recovery. Her desire to help others has spilled over to her career choice. She will graduate in May as a Phi Theta Kappa honor student and begin an internship for Addiction Counseling.
“Everything that the enemy used to try to kill me has become my strength. My life no longer belongs to me. It is His.”
Lori spoke at our Reignite Reunion. Her life scripture is one of the many verses that she held on to while in prison.
Heb. 10:23 Hold fast, without wavering the confession of our hope. For He who promised is faithful.
After reading Karla Faye Tucker Set Free, Carla Hooton emailed me asking if she could come into prison with Discipleship Unlimited. That was over six years ago, and today Carla is the inside coordinator of the Faith Based Dorm at Hobby. She also has a passion for aftercare. This April, their church under Carla and Randy's leadership hosted the second reignite reunion of faith dorm graduates on the outside of prison walls.
Update from Carla
When Randy and I first approached our Pastor about sponsoring a Discipleship Unlimited reunion, he immediately gave us a YES! From there, God orchestrated it all.
Beginning on Friday evening and going through Sunday, our church (First Baptist-Rio Vista) provided an opportunity for faith dorm participants who had been released from prison to come together with faithful DU Volunteers and also church members.
Thirty five ex-offenders gave updates on how God continues to work powerfully in their lives. They lead us in prayer and presented devotions. We had inspirational speakers and meaningful small group times. Church members volunteered to pick up ladies from the church Friday and Saturday nights so that they could shower in their homes since many were "camping out" in our fellowship hall. Love was shared, and believers became bonded.
Our Pastor invited DU to take the Sunday morning service. Our faith dorm women ministered in song and shared a testimony. Linda gave a wonderful message of love and Terry lead all of us in exciting praise and worship. The emotional finale was when the women and some of their guests presented their cardboard testimonies. Awesome!
God was most certainly glorified as there was much worship, healing, and loved shared. We look forward to next year.
God is doing a big work behind these prison walls. And we are seeing the results!
Thank you for your investment in this kingdom work!
Through your faithful prayers and generous support of Discipleship Unlimited we have witnessed God at work in amazing ways in 2012.Lives were changed at our prison outreaches.
- Carole Young Unit in Texas City in January
- Mountain View, Hilltop and Hilltop Trusty units in February and December
- Woodman State Jail in April and November
Through your faithful prayers and generous support Discipleship Inlimited launched two more Faith Based Dorms this year!
- Mountain View in January
- Hilltop in October
Graduations were held at Murray and Hobby Faith Based Dorms.
- There is a deep gratitude from the women for their books and materials
- Speakers who come to provide training leave inspired by their hungry hearts
Through your faithful prayers and generous support God has raised upmore wonderful volunteers!
- Last year we had our first Reignite Retreat!
- Volunteers and those who have participated in our Faith Based Dorms were reunited.
- Stories were shared and there was an outpouring of love.
What JOY to witness freedom on the inside! And then to be reunited and free on the outside of the fences is exhilarating. Everyone was energized by the witness of God’s grace and Faithfulness.
Thank you again for your faithful prayers and generous support! You are our ministry partners!
Texas has opened the door for every prison to have a faith-based dorm!
Thank you, ministry partners, for funding the Ruth Project! Thank you, Dee Brestin, for using your gift to teach those behind the walls.Nearly 200 women at the Mt. View Unit participated in our first Ruth DVD Bible Study. With the leadership of Kathy and Rich Diaz, along with their well-trained team of volunteers, the inmates watched the teaching DVD and worked through lesson one of the study book. Our prayer and desire has been that this seven-week study would be relevant and produce disciples. As the women participated in the first discussion, guided by their volunteer leader, it was clear that God is answering our prayers.
Karla Faye Tucker is our example of a contemporary Ruth. She was also housed in the Mt. View unit. Karla was a woman with a painful past who was radically saved and walked with unwavering faith. She pressed through great hardship. In the time leading up to her execution, Karla became a witness to the world. Her powerful testimony continues to multiply as it is shared throughout the Ruth study. We will also use this study guide to follow up with those who read the book Karla Faye Tucker Set Free and ask for study material. Today, more than 250,000 copies are in print, and letters are received daily. Her story of faith and transformation lives on!
Thank you, ministry partners, for your faithful prayers and support for the 120 inmates in our 18-month discipleship course at Murray and Hobby units!
Many graduates are now in the prison’s general population and are holding Bible studies for their fellow inmates. The following letter is from Lori, one of our graduates. This is just one example of how God is changing lives through the Faith Dorms:
Dallas’ legacy will live on through the women in white spreading the gospel of Jesus one to another. None of us will ever be the same. During my time in the faith dorm I have learned what family really means. I’ve learned about extending mercy to myself as well as others. I’ve learned to be accountable and to never accept defeat. You have taught me that the ground is level at the foot of the cross. My goal is to love others the way you do. The entire faith based dorm team is embedded on my heart forever.
Thank you, ministry partners, for your prayers and support for Terry and Jean. We are so grateful for the fruit that Terry and Jean are seeing as God changes lives through their ministry both inside of prison walls and out. They often do Sunday services at the various units as well as orientation for the newly incarcerated women. This has been an amazing year with a packed room every Wednesday for Celebrate Recovery at Woodman State Jail. Thank you for your prayers for them as they lead these vital ministries.
Here is a letter from Tiffany, a former inmate at Woodman, who was one of their participants:
I attended Celebrate Recovery with you. I appreciate how you relate to us and understand about the importance of our children. Now that I am home I am reunited with my son. We both faithfully attend CR twice a week. Thank you!
Through your giving, DU provides books and ministry materials that are so desperately needed by those behind the walls—and God is changing lives. Thank you for your partnership in the Gospel. It is Jesus’ good, glad, merry news that makes us sing for joy!