Jail Impact Ministries

Jail Impact Ministries
Outreach: The idea or vision behind Jail Impact Ministries is to meet the need of reaching the precious souls of men and women whose lives have been interrupted by prison time. Although there are literally hundreds of prison ministries actively serving in North America, there is still a great need to bring the gospel into the jails. According to the Bureau of Justice published statistics in 2003, America’s prison system has over 2 million prisoners in 1300 large prisons and more than 800,000 people in 8,000 local jails. Of course, this doesn’t include halfway houses or juvenile centers. Furthermore, the numbers are growing. Effective prison ministry is needed more than ever!
 History: The courses provided for use in this ministry are published by Emmaus Correspondence School (ECS), part of ECS Ministries. Emmaus Correspondence School commenced in 1942 and is acknowledged as the largest home-study Bible school in the world. Its courses have been translated into over 120 languages and are used in over 100 countries. Nearly 400,000 ECS courses are distributed annually to inmates in North America. Through the Emmaus Prison Ministry, the Emmaus Correspondence courses have a proven track record in jail ministry.


 Quality: Jail Impact Ministries combines the systematic study of biblical courses with the instruction and guidance offered by an instructor. Combining the resources of ECS with instructor interaction will provide student-inmates with solid biblical foundations that can transform lives. Courses have been developed for almost every need: for those with little or no Bible background, and for those who already know their way around in the Scriptures. Many letters on file testify to the personal blessing people have received through these studies. We pray you too will be blessed by the joy of sharing God’s Word through this ministry and the use of Emmaus Correspondence School materials. Further information about ECS Ministries will gladly be furnished upon request.


Blessings: Jail Impact Ministries can meet the needs of your local outreach and be used by God to transform lives. Many inmates become powerful witnesses to their family and other prisoners as well. What a blessing it is to see God work through men and women dedicated to serving Him!

Life Beyond the Cell

“Last May, I retired from my position as a senior editor at The New York Times in order to fully embrace my new company, Resilience Multimedia., and to raise my own voice as an advocate for the incarcerated and formerly incarcerated. These days, as I read the stories that will find their way into the “Think Outside the Cell Series,” I know that I’ve closed the circle on the search that brought me home from foreign shores years ago. I have found my purpose.”

In a corner of my office are bags brimming with real-life stories written by the incarcerated, the formerly incarcerated and their loved ones. Some are typed, many are neatly handwritten in ink on notebook paper, and there are even a few produced with pencil. The stories, many of which I plan to publish in my “Think Outside the Cell” book series, tackle several topics:  the optimism and fears surrounding reentry to society, prison, the complexities of prison marriages and relationships and the trials of the heart.

Each and every story speaks to the yearning in each of us to be heard, to be considered, to be understood.

 And the stories speak, too, to my personal journey of discovery, a journey that led me to leave a successful career as a journalist at one of the most prestigious newspapers in the world and to become a publisher of books designed to present a fairer, more balanced image of men and women who have prison in their backgrounds.

My journey began in the late 80’s, when I roamed Africa and, later, Europe as a foreign correspondent for The New York Times. Bearing witness to famine and coups, the raging hatred of apartheid and the rise and fall of dictators, I found myself on a search for purpose. In 1991, that search led me home to the United States.

“Think Outside the Cell: An Entrepreneur’s Guide for the Incarcerated,” was written by Joseph Robinson and published in 2007 – the first product of Resilience Multimedia, which was created and founded by Sheila Rule, a former senior editor at The New York Times.


At the outset, purpose was little more than a vague yet nagging notion that for all that I’d been blessed to receive in my life, I wanted to give back. I started out by doing volunteer work with the formerly homeless—I served as a human safety net of sorts as they made the transition to public housing—and with teenage girls at a group home in Brooklyn. I also became a board member at a New York City social services agency that helped vulnerable children and families. Before heading to my overseas assignment, I had spent several years as a Times Metro reporter, and of the various beats I covered, the homeless and social services were the beats that seemed particularly suited to the inclination of my heart.

During this time, my son and I would often make our way to Riverside Church on Sundays; I’d been attracted to the church because of its reputation for championing social justice causes. It was at Riverside in the fall of 2001 that I was set on a path that would take me in an unexpected and enriching direction.

It was Homecoming Sunday, a day when Riverside’s various clubs and organizations put up tables, display their literature and talk up their activities in the hope of attracting new members. At one of the tables, there was a poster for the Prison Ministry. I read the organization’s brochure and listened as the no-nonsense representative told me to get involved. I recall simply thinking that perhaps there was something I could do to help, especially since so many of the incarcerated are black people, my people.

I joined the Prison Ministry, and I was asked to correspond with incarcerated men and women who wrote to the ministry. And so I did. Although viewed by general society as faceless statistics or frightening stereotypes, the people I came to know were multidimensional, complex human beings, much like the rest of us. More than a few were skilled and talented in a range of disciplines, from writing and music to business and law.

And there were those who’d clearly used their time in prison to rethink and disavow the values and belief systems that had brought them there.

One of the incarcerated people with whom I corresponded was Joseph Robinson, a self-taught expert on business who had personally schooled hundreds of incarcerated men about personal finance and entrepreneurship.

Joe Robinson and Sheila Rule


In the course of corresponding, Joe and I fell in love, and we eventually married. And with his smart guidance and encouragement, I started my publishing company, Resilience Multimedia. As part of its mission, Resilience seeks to present a more balanced view of the incarcerated through books that allow them a voice, that feature their success stories and that help them tackle some of the hard challenges they face.

My company’s highly praised first book, “Think Outside the Cell: An Entrepreneur’s Guide for the Incarcerated,” was written by Joe and published in 2007.

It garnered a number of strong reviews and endorsements, including one from John C. Whitehead, a former co-chairman of Goldman Sachs and former U.S. deputy secretary of State, who wrote: “This no-nonsense, step-by-step guide offers a golden key to successful reentry by teaching inmates and former inmates how to use their entrepreneurial talents to realize their dreams.”

CS Ministries 2008 End-of-the-Year Report

What a blessing it is to be able to share our ministry news and resources with so many other folks through the International Network of Prison Ministries. 2008 was another exciting year for ECS Ministries (formerly Emmaus Correspondence School). Well over a quarter of a million courses were sent out completely free of charge to incarcerated men and women throughout North America. Through the dedicated service of many coordinators and volunteers, ECS Ministries continues to make a great impact for the Lord in jail & prison ministry.
 The ECS Prison Ministry program added several new courses in 2008. We currently offer over seventy courses in English and nearly forty in Spanish. From the salvation message through practical ways to succeed after release from prison, ECS courses reach and teach by means of the Word of God. The quality ECS courses used in the prison ministry are designed for popular, non-college credit use. Certificates of achievement are issued for individual course completion and also for multiple-credit recognition. We at ECS
believe our materials benefit the inmates in several ways. Along with instructional value, we have many wonderful letters on record at our office testifying of the positive spiritual influence received from studying and applying Biblical instruction. Here are just a few from 2008:

"I've gotten correspondence courses from others but yours are by far the best! Keep up the good work. I can see so many lost souls finding the way and light through your teachings." Herschel

"Plant My Feet On Higher Ground has helped with reassurance that my faith and how I've been using my faith is exactly how God would have me use it." William

"I have just finished the Born to Win course and it has been very hard to put it down. It was truly a blessing to learn a great amount about Jesus Christ, sin, and other things I need to know. I will be looking forward to the next course!." Frank

What is happening to me through your courses is nothing short of a miracle. The beautiful thing is that I am aware of spiritual growth following each course completed yet I am still a babe in Christ. Lessons for Christian Living has been my life line to growth." Todd

We look forward to seeing how the Lord will bless the ministry in 2009. Thanks for your prayers as we all seek to provide inmates with various means of support. We area body and each part plays a significant role!

In Christ's Service,

Alan Stoltz
ECS National Prison Ministry Coordinator




Join Pen-Pal Group before Christmas!

We have a pen-pal group where 300 subscribers see their service to the
Lord in ministry through mail.

If you are one of those who requested a card, a letterer to the inmate
or any other help – it is your turn HELP OTHERS!

Make this Christmas not only a Holiday for yourself, but start helping
others, those who need you!

Please join:

Tell us about your inmate:

Subscribe and help others:

Here is another useful link:

Merry Christmas to all of INPM!

Serge Taran,
Founder of INPM

Penpals For Women Needed

Greetings Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I want to E-mail everyone in hopes of getting some help.

Up until now, Pen Pal Connection has been able to find pen pals for the ladies incarcerated within a couple of months. But now we have more womenasking for help, the women have been waiting about 6 months to get a pen-pal.

Can you take some of our inmates, women or men? They are praying and hoping to get mail, most want to grow in the knowledge of Jesus and serve Him.

If you can help, please contact me!

If you don't have any way to help them get a pen pal, please pray about this need.


God bless you,
Beth Michael




Member of International Network of Prison Ministries



Just volunteer!

Just volunteer!

There are so many ways that your help is needed.  Prison Ministry is complicated enough because lets face it, folks are scared to walk into a Prison.  I can understand that.  That is why there are letter writing ministries out here.  The lists of those inmates BEGING for Christian Correspondence are growing daily. 

We at The John 3:17 Project are already writing well over 100 inmates, and we have just begun.  What needs to happen is every christian in the US needs to just write one inmate.  Volunteer yourself, tell your churches, tell your bible studies.  It's only one letter.  Plant a seed.

There are over 2.4 Million inmates in the US.  There are over 244 Million Christians.  It does not take a math genius to figure out it only takes 1% of Christian America to make a huge difference in the lifes of the imprisoned.

Help today!!  Volunteer with one of the MANY Christian Letter Writing or Pen Pal Ministries.  Take it to your church.

If everyone helped, there would be no one on the inside sitting alone waiting for 6 months to hear from a Christian Brother or


Visit our Site for more information and to volunteer.  OR Volunteer at any other ministry or website… Just volunteer!

You will be Blessed!

Robert Gary,


The John 3:17 Project


Contact The John 3:17 Project