Christmas packages for South Carolina inmates
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) – Christmas gifts are going out to inmates across South Carolina, all thanks to the South Carolina Baptist Convention. Around 2,100 churches made its way to Columbia to drop of gifts at Shandon Baptist Church.
“In our prison system as you would well expect inmates feel they are very much alone, they are separated from their families and it is a difficult experience,”said Chaplain Mike Brown who is the Chief of Pastoral Services for the South Carolina Department of Corrections.
For hours church volunteers and prison chaplains stuffed gift bags with items approved by the South Carolina Department of Corrections. Jon Jamison is a team leader with the South Carolina Baptist Convention says during Christmas no one should feel forgotten. “Our inmates are among the most vulnerable among us and they’re often excluded from their families, excluded from community, excluded from relationships and so this is just one way that we can demonstrate to them that while they are separate physically they’re not separate from our thoughts and prayers.”
In years past a devotional book was included in the gift bags but this year devotional videos will be uploaded to tablets for inmates to view.
“Our hope really is that they would find some encouragement in that and again know that not only are they not forgotten in the community but they certainly have not been forgotten by God. He longs to know them and care for them,” said Jamison.
Normally church volunteers would take the gifts to the institutions but due to COVID protocols at the facilities chaplains will deliver the gifts to inmates tomorrow.
“A remembrance from these churches across our state in the South Carolina Baptist Convention makes a world of difference in the morale within our facilities and lets our inmates know that they are remembered, they are cared for, they are prayed for,” said Chaplain Brown.
According to organizers, over the years the South Carolina Baptist Convention has given 750,000 inmates a gift from home.