We are first and foremost Christians.
As Christians, we believe that Jesus Christ took the righteous wrath of God against sin upon himself so that we do not have to bear it. The God of the Bible is a righteous God who is totally justified in condemning sin, but out of his saving love for his people has condemned our sin through Christ, so that we can live in relationship with him. We do not believe Jesus died for good people, because there are none who are good enough.
What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written:
“None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God.
All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”
All of us deserve his wrath. Even people who go to work every day, who pay their taxes, who don't drink and drive, who don't rape or murder, etc. All of us stand condemned without the work of Christ on our behalf.
Therefore, we find the idea that prisoners should be locked up and forgotten to be without merit. Prisoners are sinners, but so are we who live outside the prison walls, and Jesus died for sinners. Not good sinners, or better sinner, but for sinners. The blood of Christ is more than sufficient to pay for the sins of a murderer, a rapist, a thief, and a liar. God is indeed glorified when he intervenes in the lives of those who are considered 'the worst of the worst' - forgiving them, saving them, and working to sanctify them and the body of Christ that they are a part of.
We believe that many of the prisoners at Bellamy Creek and Handlon Correctional Facilities in Ionia, Michigan, have indeed been saved by the grace of God. We see the evidence of his grace in their lives. Every week, volunteers visit the men at Bellamy Creek and minister to them. However, the volunteers are also ministered to by the inmates. Celebration Fellowship is a church that brings the body of Christ together. Some of us happen to live within the prison, and others of us live outside of the prison, but we are brothers and sisters in Christ. Each of us at different points in our sanctification. Each of us called to minister in love to one another - regardless of our past. We all have different pasts, but we share the same future. We will spend eternity together singing the praises of our glorious God!
You can contact Pastor Andy at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you!