Dismas Ministry Blog

Inmate Voices

More inspiring testimonials from inmates on their spiritual journey. inmate testimonialinmate testimonialinmate testimonialinmate testimonials

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Dismas Ministry at the Men of Christ Conference

This past Saturday, Dismas Ministry enjoyed having a table at the 2013 Men of Christ Conference in Milwaukee.

“Hello Men of Christ!” 

“Men of Christ is a group of Catholic lay men, from all walks of life, that have come together to make a difference in this world… and that difference, we believe, begins with faith filled men. Our vision is to create a conference that will evangelize, catechize, and unify Catholic men. The mission is to honor our Lord Jesus Christ by bringing Christian men together; forming a brotherhood that will empower each man to boldly live his Catholic faith.”

The Conference offered a morning and evening Mass (Evening Mass was led by Dismas Ministry Board Member, Auxiliary Bishop Donald J. Hying) and inspirational speakers including Joe Lombardi. Read more about the 2013 Conference here>

For Dismas Ministry, the conference was an opportunity to share our work with many Catholics who haven’t interacted with us before.  Ally, Dismas Ministry’s Assistant Director worked our table from 8 am to 5 pm, asking if people had heard of our ministry before. The majority of people learned about Dismas Ministry for the first time. They left with knowledge of our services, as well as easy ideas on how to get involved like joining our union of prayer.  It was a great day of interacting with others and generating interest in our ministry!

dismas ministry information table

Our Dismas Ministry table set up for the conference.

Lunch during Men of Christ Conference

Men at the Conference join Ally for Lunch at Dismas Ministry Table.

On December 1st, Dismas Ministry launched our National Prison Ministry Awareness Campaign, “Where are the Catholics?” It has been 94 days and we’ve been steadily working, connecting with those who have sent in the response postcard or filled out our “Share” Form on our website. Here is a summary of the campaign’s impact so far.

dismas ministry awareness campaign info graphic

A Reflection on Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Season of Lent. It is a season of penance, reflection, and fasting which prepares us for Christ’s Resurrection on Easter Sunday, through which we attain redemption. Our foreheads are marked with ashes to humble our hearts and reminds us that life passes away on Earth. We remember this when we are told “Remember, Man is dust, and unto dust you shall return.”

The ashes are made from the blessed palms used in the Palm Sunday celebration of the previous year. The ashes are christened with Holy Water and are scented by exposure to incense. While the ashes symbolize penance and contrition, they are also a reminder that God is gracious and merciful to those who call on Him with repentant hearts. His Divine mercy is of utmost importance during the season of Lent, and the Church calls on us to seek that mercy during the entire Lenten season with reflection, prayer and penance.

During this season of Lent, Join Dismas Ministry in praying for all the inmates we serve and have yet to serve, who are seeking mercy and reflecting on their new or renewed relationship with God.

Read more about Ash Wednesday and the Season of Lent on: http://www.catholic.org/clife/lent/ashwed.php

A New Catholic Prayer Study for Inmates

praying handsDismas Ministry recently launched a new inmate correspondence course called Pray Always-A Catholic Prayer Study for Inmates. Like the ministry’s two other courses, this unique course is designed especially for Catholic inmates who want to learn more about their own faith tradition and be able to defend it against challenges from prison volunteers, staff and fellow inmates.

The course includes a series of three resource books that together provide a comprehensive review of how and why Catholics pray. The first book, Part 1: Prayer in the Old Testament, includes the lives of the great women and men of ancient Israel and examples of how they prayed.This first part presents the background for the next book, Part 2: Prayer in the New Testament. In this part of the course, Jesus, Mary, the disciples and other people of Jesus’ ministry are presented as models of prayer. How the psalms and temple worship influenced Christian prayer are explored. Part 3: Prayer in the Catholic Tradition explores how Catholics have prayed from early to modern times.

Read more about the Prayer Study in our Newsletter>