BECAUSE OF YOU, SOMEONE CARES
We had a
foul up with both
the Post Office
and the printer.
The Zip Code
remains the same at 260-387-7423. This has caused some
confusion. This is correct and the note I may have sent was wrong
as well as newsletter for July.
We need writers and Faith Partners. We have an ad in the
Recorder magazine and MAY soon have an article in Message
magazine. My 85 year old eyes are a bit shady from reading mail all
day. We are looking to make some changes as this ministry is
getting very big. Raising money we could hire others. We can
maybe attach us to other ministries. At 85 and 78 we are both very
healthy. But only God knows. We are open to ideas.
WHAT DIRECTION ARE WE GOING
When God called us to this Ministry HIS word was all I
needed. Yvonne helped define that. The first sermons I preached
was borrowed from Walter Pearson until I learned to Preach and
teach on my own. Again with my bride at my side, going were I went
was great fun and rewarding.
HOW WE MATCH YOU UP
All inmate mail is put in a pile. When you send in information
about becoming a Pen Friend, you are put at the bottom of another
pile. When your information makes it to the top of the pile, you are
matched with someone at the top of the other pile.
GOD SAID IT, WE BELIEVE IT
In prison are a lot of people in the wrong place at the wrong
time. One man was convicted by the testimony of a twelve year old
and spent thirty-nine years in prison. The boy - now a man - told the
truth. He yelled while in tears “I lied.” Yvonne says, “Do the crime,
do the time.” What is going on now in this country is people
receiveing unequal sentence time for the same crime. Racial tension
causes time served for black and Mexican folks to be different. If
you have an attorney you stand a better chance at less time unless
the attorney is appointed by the court. We believe a lot of men and
women sentenced to prison will end up in HEAVEN. If they have help
His name is Bobbie and he they will be there IF WE FIND A WAY TO REACH THEM.
OUR YEARS IN
PRISON ON DVD
His name is Bobbie and he
took our videos and put them on
DVD. They need some editing
and will soon be available. Pray
for this man.
The DVDs will show inmate
testimonies, inmate baptisms
and the good side of the bad
side. We are going to share
inmate’s stories, forty years of
them. You will see the baptismal
built by inmates. You will see
the God squad at work. Next we
have forty years of inmate’s
letters, poems. and stories. You
may understand why Jesus
said, “I was in prison and you
visited me not.”
There is a possibility we will
be in Message Magazine, much
needed in prison. We need to
change our website,
Someonecares.org. We have
had a very successful ministry
and it has taught us there is so
much that can still be done.
There is quite a bit of difference in doing what we do now
and what we had done before. Now my house is like a post
office with mail everywhere. People are surprised when I tell
them I really miss going cell to cell. As we have said before, the
blocks are five stories high with fifty cells to a block. It did not
take long for inmates to learn we were there because we cared.
In fact when we entered the blocks someone would yell, “Get
decent.” You really could feel the hate and anger. I remember
one day talking to an inmate, standing outside his cell, as a shot
was fired. He jumped under his bunk. I stood against the wall.
After over forty years we do miss going in. We do enjoy the Pen
Friend Program. Some men write to themselves to hear their
name called. Think about what Jesus said and become a Pen
Friend or take one more name. I have always said, “Do the
crimes, do the time.” But Jesus changed my husband and
taught us to serve him. A nun we recruited told me ministering
in prison must be positive. I wish I could go into the cell blocks.
As we have always said please don’t let your doctrine be a
barrier but a bridge to Jesus. To our church we are trying to
prove SDA does not mean Sitting Down Always. We really need
help from young and old, men or women. We are a faith
ministry and need support which Is tax deductible.
Have a safe
MY NAME IS JACK
I got a Pen Friend and am impressed. I was matched with an older
lady and she, after two years, is like a mom. I am writing this as an
alert and an answered prayer. If you write and get no answer don’t
give up. I often trade meals for a stamp. I get a letter a week and it
keep me sane. You will never know how lonely it is when you sit in a
cell twenty-four hours a day, sever days a week. I’m so glad that
Jesus is now here. I’m getting a cell mate so its going to be
crowded. Bless you all.
CHAPLAIN STANLEY READ
As a minister I do believe in miracles. When Don called me as a new
Christian wanting to teach the Bible I was amazed. He was a new
Christen I wanted to see. When Yvonne joined him I was amazed.
When they both, after a few months, said, “You are overcrowded and
have no staff. We would like to volunteer to be full time Chaplains.” I
sent them to the police academy and they got the status as full time
staff chaplains. Don had quit a very good job. They bought Jesus
to the main line.
CHAPLAIN HARRY HOWARD
The new Warden at San Quentin came from Soledad. He liked what
they did there and bought them down a 95 mile drive one way. I
enjoyed working with them. I gave them the worst cell block any
where. Yvonne, being small, handled all and did it well. Don’s reputation
preceded him. In fact the black gangs all got together and
made them honorary blacks. Don had a special talent in handling
hard core and Death row inmates.
We may have on the DVDs a bit of San Quentin and its Christian
A CHANGE IN POLICY
We have really
gotten big. We can no
longer read all the mail.
We will on slow days if we
ever get one. Please - if
you write an inmate and
don’t get an answer write
once more. If you still don’t get an answer return the inmate’s
infomation to us and we will re-match you. Please contact us if you
are not sure of anything.
You are arrested, put into
cuffs and taken off to jail. After
booking you are questioned,
often for a long time. Then you
are moved to a cell, maybe full.
If you have an attorney things
might move faster. If not, you
are given a public
defender. The crime is not
severe and you get two years.
Again you are cuffed and put on
to a bus. Next stop - HELL.
If you are not street raised
things will be tough. If you have
money they take it. If you do
not have friends they take you.
In one of our DVDs you will see
Yvonne sitting in an inmate’s cell
with the inmate, two bunks and
a toilet with a sink. You might
shower once a week.
Due to massive overcrowding
you may be in that cell
seven days a week. You might
get one warm meal and two
sandwiches all at once. Your
outside time will be in another
cell with maybe a basket ball. If
you get visits they may be in a
very crowed, smokey room. You
might get out of you cell for an
hour a day or once a week.
Prison is split with regards to church or religious
background - most inmates have had little
or none, some a bit more. We developed Paper
Sunshine as a Friendship Ministry hoping to lead
inmates to Jesus. We ask our writers to not let
their doctrine be a barrier, but a bridge to Jesus.
We have had a million inmates complete some
sort of Bible study, mostly through Voice Of
If you decide to write to one or fifty inmates, the
Program works this way: Your name goes into a
pile. The inmate’s request, which has a detailed
application and a letter of introduction, go into
another pile. The pen friends are matched by
whoever’s on the top of each pile. If a male inmate
requests a female pen friend, we inform them we
are not a dating or matrimonial service. Sure they
try sometimes and we sometimes miss it. But if
you have a problem we will take care of it. In over
thirty years we have never had a major problem.
We even have children writing with parents,
helping to lead inmates to Christ.
Years ago I received a letter from an inmate,
and it was rough and raw. I threw it in the waste
basket, but Yvonne pulled it out. He was raised
like I had been, had done things I had done. He
was on Death Row, and I was not even close to it.
His name was also Don, and I wrote to him for
quite awhile and enrolled him in several Bible
studies. I then got him a new Pen Friend and
Jesus took over. Don became the preacher on
Death Row, leading many to Jesus. I spent time in
prayer with him before his execution and will look
forward to seeing him in Heaven.
A woman named Mary has written to over one
hundred inmates through us for the past twenty
five years, and all have taken Bible studies and
most have accepted Christ. If she was not comfortable
with any of them, she would send their information
back to us. Sad to say, many people have
tried this Program, not liked it, and quit without the
courtesy of returning the information so someone
else could try.
Paper Sunshine is Crime Prevention. Yvonne
will tell you how this all started with one inmate. I
will finish with a man who was terrible.
I walked into a cell block and headed toward
the first row of cells. I could smell hate, garbage
and human waste. The first cell I arrived at was a
mess and had a man with his back to me, hair all
the way down his back. He turned and charged
me, and I don’t know what he would have done
had the cell doors not been there. Several guards
came over and asked if I needed help, but I told
them no. The next time we entered that cell block
the same thing happened. Then Yvonne joined
me, and we passed by his cell. About a year later
we passed his cell as usual, but a guard came
after us and said the man wanted to see us. I told
Yvonne to stay well behind me. The man spoke to
us, saying, “I have money and I want to buy whatever
you are selling. I’ve seen men in here
change, and some even left for better parts of the
prison. But what do you sell?” I was stuck. Yvonne
pushed me back and moved around me, while all
the guards moved closer with their rifles. Yvonne
told him we were selling nothing, but were giving
away freedom and peace through Jesus. She
talked for about thirty minutes. Then a little bitty
tear fell down his face. “I also want Jesus!” he
said. We asked him if he would pray with us, and
we put our hands through the bars and took hold
of his. All the rifles were cocked. Yvonne started
the prayer, and then the man prayed a prayer I’m
sure Jesus had never heard before. He became a
changed man, and his life changed. He was
moved into general population and three years
ago he earned a parole. The worst of the worst
become a child of the King. Nothing is impossible
You can read more about us and this
ministry on our web page
www.someonecares.org, or give us a
call at 260-387-7423.
God Bless, Don & Yvonne