The Heart of Christmas

Inmates in a Cambodia prison learned the meaning of Christmas recently through an outreach led by Alliance international worker Joyce Johns and local church leaders. Joyce and her colleagues have been building relationships with the prisoners as well as the prison director during the past year, helping to renovate some bathrooms and a meeting hall that will be used for teaching literacy and basic health education. Joyce also partners with Prison Fellowship in making low-cost distributions such as toiletries, blankets, and food stuffs.

Along with the church leaders from Sen Monorom, Mondol Kiri, Joyce held a Christmas celebration with the 70 inmates. Besides providing a meal, Joyce and her team also distributed 12 Bibles. The men shared the Bibles and are eager for more. “Several prisoners accepted Jesus that day,” says Joyce.

The ministry team had a meal with the prison director and continues to build bridges into this prison. Local believers plan to continue basic supply distribution each month. They also teach literacy classes each week in the prison. “Building people up will provide them with a better chance of reintegration into life when they are released,” says Joyce’s coworker, David Strong. “Having Jesus in their hearts, whether in prison or after their release, will give them true freedom.”

“I was in prison and you came to visit me” (Matthew 25:36b).


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