Institutional Ministries shines the light of Jesus’ love upon the walled-in souls of our communities. Often these are forgotten and overlooked souls living behind physical walls. Others are behind walls that cannot be seen. Yet every one of these souls is someone for whom Christ has died. Our great privilege is to let the “Light of the world” shine behind these walls so that they will “never walk in darkness but always have the light of life.” This behind-the-walls ministry is divided into four unique areas: Correctional Care, Extended Care, Health Care and Caring Support.
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12
Talk to anyone who has ever done ministry inside a prison and one of the comments that you are bound to hear is how personally edifying and uplifting it is to share God’s Word with people in prison.
Chaplain Joseph Radsek
With 68 county jails, 39 state prisons and 2 federal penitentiaries in the state of Wisconsin alone, Correctional Care ministry is an enormous mission field. Not only is the prison population in excess of 23,000 inmates, most of the people we serve are either un-churched or do not have a church home.
People frequently seek out advanced medical procedures and specialized treatments beyond their local communities making it increasingly difficult for their pastors to serve them. Teaming up with local pastors, Institutional Ministries helps provide spiritual care for these individuals while they seek help in hospitals and mental health facilities that are often far from home.
With over 50 million Baby-boomers retiring in just the last two years, and 69 million more on their heels, the spiritual needs of this segment of society will soon increase exponentially. This presents us with a unique opportunity to prepare, evangelize and serve these soon-to-be Saints Triumphant who are living in nursing homes, rehab centers and hospice care facilities.
Today, more than ever, the number of people suffering in silence behind unseen walls of addiction, anxiety and depression, PTSD, and moral injury is simply staggering. Our chaplains and support groups offer spiritual guidance and caring support to those struggling with these issues.