Redemption in Connecticut

In Blog by Bruce LogueLeave a Comment

The Connecticut prison officials along with the Governor visited Germany to examine Germany’s prison system along with its recidivism rate that is about half of that of the United States. Half!

After the visit Connecticut started a new, experimental program at Cheshire Correctional Institute. 200 men, between 18 and 25 applied for the program. 50 were chosen along with 20 older prisoner-mentors to be participants in the redeeming of their fellow prisoners.

This extraordinary story is also a parable of how disciples of Jesus should be in and relate to a world of broken people. Here are some parabolic parallels.

  • All we humans are all either mentors or program enrollees.
  • Everyone has a story. There is some reason that we fail or succeed. We’d like to think that we “pulled ourselves up by our own bootstraps,” but that is naive and overly confident. We are products of our history.
  • Redemption involves helping others to imagine a better self and helping them to find that self.
  • Encouragement is a powerful motivator of better behavior. Criticism and judgment are discouraging and motivate bad behavior.
  • Seeing the potential of our fellow beings requires cultivation of grace, forgiveness, and imagination. The result is a hopeful and optimistic

As you watch the video, imagine Jesus using the prisoners in Cheshire Correctional to tell the story of love, acceptance, and redemption.

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