The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Prison visits deliver powerful witness

Articles on prisoners, families highlight ministry in action

I was so touched by the articles on prisoners and their families in the September 2010 issue. My wife and I once visited a girl my wife knew who had been arrested. The girl broke down and cried: "You are the only ones who have come to see me." We were at her trial and visited her in prison. We started sending her money so she could finish her college degree. Professors from a university offered courses at the prison for very little cost. It was an opportunity that must have come from the Lord. She has become a solid Christian. She was baptized in the prison and is active in the ministry there. She now calls us mom and dad. Who knows where the Lord will lead you.

The Rev. Robert S. Ove
Rio Rancho, N.M.

Building a bridge

Thank you for the articles on prison ministry. I was especially pleased to read about the "partnership" program between Lutheran Church of Christ the King in Tacoma, Wash., and a released man from the Shelton Correctional Institution. Building that bridge between the prison and the church/community is a must. Lutheran theology has so much to offer to the incarcerated and we long have underappreciated that ministry in the Lutheran church.

Bryn A. Carlson
Director of religious services (retired), U.S. Bureau of Prisons, Covington, Ga.

Consider credit unions

My wife and I haven't had our money in a regular bank in more than a decade (September, page 18). No, it's not hidden in a mattress; we've kept it in one of the credit unions we're eligible to join because of where we work. We got our mortgage through it, all of our car loans, our home improvement loans, and they don't nickel and dime us on fees. Yes, the big banks offer certain advantages, such as ATMs everywhere with no (discernible) service charges, but credit unions offer banking at a human scale and are concerned about their members as people. There are even a few Lutheran credit unions out there.

Keith Gatling
Syracuse, N.Y.

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February issue


Embracing diversity