|Vol. 2002 No. 12 December 2002
Someone Cares Home Page
MERRY CHRISTMAS HAPPY NEW YEAR
Closing the year this year is going to be just a little different. The birth of Jesus means so many things to so many of us. His birth gave Yvonne and me, and so many of you, a chance to witness for Him. We have very special friends who lost their son, John, several weeks ago. We pray that when the grieving is over, they remember that the birth of Jesus means their son has H.O.P.E (H)eaven (O)nly (P)ossible (E)nding.
Often in the hustle and bustle we forget the wonderful things we have, or had. For 26 years they had this great boy—not perfect, but heading that way. We ask you all to extend your prayers to the Ferree family. We do understand the grief; we have lost loved ones this year, but the Reason For this Season is Jesus. He alone gives us, as Christians, the knowledge that we will all be together again. _Soon and Very Soon_. So Darryl, Julia, Christie, Dee and children, Jesus went to prepare a place for Jon. In the twinkle of an eye, we will all be together again.2002
Thanks to Jesus and His power to answer prayer, we’ve had a really different year. Others we will not see again until we all get to Heaven. We believe Some-one Cares did a great job helping the Master. Each of you who prayed a prayer, became part of Paper Sun-shine, or sent funds, helped someone get to know Jesus a bit better. We pray each will extend, through Jesus, in 2003 what you did in 2002; if that was nothing, we look forward to you joining The God Squad. A special gift under the tree, for Jesus, is somehow finding a way to serve HIM in this time of trouble. War and rumors of war, storms all predicted by Jesus in HIS word, we must be ready.
MERRY CHRISTMAS: CARDS FROM INMATES
My name is Janet. I am serving 10 years in prison for selling drugs to supply my habit. Several years ago I got a Pen Friend from Someone Cares (two, really—a Mom and her son). She had come through a similar life style as I, abused and hurt. She turned to Jesus, I turned to drugs. She told me what Jesus did for her and she really introduced me to Him. Now I stay high on Jesus’ love. Learning to give yourself is one gift we can all give to Jesus.
My name is George. I am in prison for vehicular manslaughter. Serving 10 years. Different crime, same time. I got drunk and caused the death of a man and his son. I will never forgive myself for that night. I learned through Someone Cares that the most important thing is to receive, and deserve, Jesus’ forgiveness. My Pen Friends have made my life in this Hell Hole bearable, because they helped me know about forgiveness and tomorrow. If you have an extra prayer I beg for the forgiveness of the family of those whose lives I took. A prayer for me will help, too.
My name is Robert. I served 18 years for murder and I am sad for that, but happy to say Jesus took my sins away. I have been out of prison 3 years and thanks to the Clarks, I have gained back my self respect. I don’t know you, but Don asked me to tell what Someone Cares means to me. They introduced me to Jesus, the one who took my sins away. I really learned that to be Free In Jesus is to be free, indeed. This Christmas I am going to spend back in prison but only to take Jesus to those who know or need to know Him. God Bless You and Yours.
This time of the year Don and I usually spend in Prison. It has to be one of the worst days in the year for those who are incarcerated!! We had Christmas parties at Soledad, and the inmates enjoyed it so much. We had a Christmas Party for those on Death Row in Eddyville, Kentucky, and in Cocoran, California. We went to share the day with them, by just having the chapel open and singing Christmas Carols. It is amazing the small things that bring so much happiness to them.
I am looking forward this year to being able to decorate the house a bit and enjoy family, children, and grandchildren. They are so special and have been so understanding in years past that we will cherish every moment we have with them. Somehow the years slip away and before you know it, you have become a senior citizen, which I really like; however let me add real quick that it hasn't slowed us down at all. If anything we are more active than ever.
One year at San Quentin we went into the cell blocks and sang Christmas carols. I will never forget that. We went with Chaplain Howard and his lovely wife, Kay. The men had tears in their eyes as they would hum with us. What a humbling experience. God's gift of His son dying on the cross for us lost sinners is the Gift of all Gift's! What more could we ever want?
MORE CHRISTMAS CARDS: HAPPY HOLIDAYS
My name is Paul. After talking to Don on the phone, I decided to start a prayer vigil with the Christian inmates here in Texas for the Ferree family. God has blessed all of us, by seeing us not a we were, not as we are, but how we can be through HIM.
When I came to prison, I went through massive depression. Then, through a book sent to me by Someone Cares (request of family) I found Jesus. No, He was there all the time. HE found ME! I still make mistakes and try hard not to. My conversion has brought me peace and also put my family back together. We will be far apart this Christmas, but through the Love of Jesus, we will be together. If you can help Someone Cares this Christmas, or any time, please do, they do so much for us.
_Happiness is to Know the Savior_. I came to prison in 1981. Funny, I was really not a bad person, but prison made me one. I spent more time in the HOLE (Solitary Confinement) than out. One day I heard a knock on my cell.
“Go away,” I said.
Then a sweet female voice said, “I have a gift for you.”
I bounced up and met Yvonne, the pretty half of the God Squad. (My name is Henry In the Hole.) “I have a Christmas present from Jesus.”
I had lost track of time and forgot Christmas; so had my family and friends. She handed me a Bible. I told her I was not a Christian or any other religion. She said This is written about you, and to you, and for you. She explained that getting to know Jesus would get me out of here and show me the way to eternal, forever peace. It was Christmas Eve. I thanked her as she said " God Bless and Merry Christmas." The next day I was returned to main line.
On the way to chow Christmas morning, a fellow inmate asked me if I was going to Church. I said "H---. no!" Then I remembered Yvonne and the Bible. I said, “Sure, I'll go. I walked into the Chapel and there was Yvonne, playing the piano, leading a large group singing carols I had not heard in a long time.
Then Don came and preached a sermon that knocked my socks off. Telling about God's plan that brought Jesus to Earth. He talked about the Babe in the Manger crying for ME! He preached about the deeds of Jesus, ending on the cross—for me. Don said "If you dont have a relationship with Jesus, now is the time, this is the place! Thank You, Jesus, for making me _part of the Family of God. I have been washed in the fountain; cleansed by HIS blood_.
Yvonne and I have spent 18 of the last 25 years in prison on Christmas. We had a Christmas pizza party at Paso Robles Boys School (a prison for California’s gang youth). Home-made pizzas and Christmas carols made tough gang guys cry. Every now and then we hear from one of them.
Then we had a Christmas Party for Death Row inmates and many family members at Eddyville, Kentucky. That is a night we will never forget. Another year, thanks to two donations, we gave out a Book called Steps to Christ and a dollar to every inmate at San Quentin–5734 of them. To see tough men, lives ruined, get a glimmer of the Son Light, is a joy. We have walked the Yard on Christmas and held services at Soledad, Avenal, San Quentin, Corcoran, Delano in California; Jackson and Coldwater in Michigan; Madison, Wisconsin. We have, through your generous giving, sent thousands of Christmas cards to inmates to send to their families. We have helped the Salvation Army and Red Cross with Angel Tree programs, to send gifts to inmates’ kids from their loved ones.
This year at Christmas we are going to spend a rare Christmas at home with many of our family members. Wish you could come.
MAY GOD ABOVE INCREASE HIS LOVE
We have told you all thanks. Because of YOU, Someone Cares. A gift from God, through you, is that, again, we are going to end the year in the Black despite postage increases, moving and other expenses. Some months were slim, but God promised the increase. If each of you can do in 2003 what you did for Jesus through us, it will be a very good year.
Please remember, you do not have to financially support this ministry to be a part of it, but it sure helps. Pray for Voice Of Prophecy and the other Bible schools we use; soon 250,000 inmates will have completed Bible studies. Times have been hard for many and still they have given and we say God Bless and Thank You. God’s gift to us is good health and the ability, in good and bad times, to get His work in prison done. Through your help, one more inmate may have a friend that leads them to _What A Friend We Have In Jesus_.
If you do not write an inmate, will you?
If you do not support this ministry, will you? (All dona-tions are tax deductible.)
If you are not a Prayer Partner, will you be one?
If you have a good used car, we need one.
If you have a good used copier, we need one.
But most of all, we need you.
Merry Christmas - Happy New Year
Yesterday was a beautiful autumn day with the sun fading in and out as the clouds went by. There are walnuts to de-husk, many behind-things to do inside. I feel like the squirrel whose nest is in a silver maple across the driveway. It has a runway through the canopy and is busily gathering the rest of the nuts for his winter stash. We, too, must be busy about the Lord’s business.
I think of Don Hawkins in his small cell, frantically trying to finish all his writing in case the Governor of Oklahoma hardens his heart and does not convert his death sentence to life without parole. For those of you who are new, Don is on Death Row, maintaining a ministry to other inmates as well as pastors and youth, What a difference 16 years with the Lord can do! If you would like help in this appeal, write to and pray for:
Governor Frank Keating
3003 N. Oklahoma Avenue
Oklahoma City OK 71105
Re: Don Hawkins #153687
In his last letter, Don said that because of his ministry and example, he is held to a much higher standard by both inmates and staff. He has found it very difficult to forgive himself for the crime that brought him to prison, but he knows that God has forgiven him, and looks at him now with Christ’s eyes, _Washed in the Blood of the Lamb_.
GOD IS S-O-O GOOD!!
This morning there was a dusting of snow on the fields and the phone was ringing. A man was asking if I’d lost a planner. As he described it, the awful violated feeling grabbed me – someone had been in my car, in my drive-way, during the night. The planner, a back-up, had been discarded over three miles away, on a bridge (perhaps the toss was intended for the river below). The caller was on his way to meet a tow truck, so I quickly threw on some attire and raced to meet him. It was evident the thief had been interested in my CD player. CDs were scattered on the floor of the van, (not his/her style). The cover of the cooler between the front seats had been removed but the thief wasn’t interested in Christian books.
I found my Good Samar-itan, who handed me my soggy planner (worth more than the CD player). The contents looked intact, even the season travelog tickets. The only thing missing was the spare key to the van. Our little local police department was not on duty to make a report, so I made a quick trip to the dealership to have all six locks changed (very expensive). Their shuttle driver took me home.
Another phone call from the Good Samaritan after I’d settled in to write up a police report to fax: he’d picked up a key when he found the plan-ner, and with his own car troubles, forgot it. A frantic call to the dealership stopped the repairs before they start-ed, the Samaritan took the key to them, the shuttle made another trip to fetch me, and half a day later, I’m writing this.
The point being: God loves a good cliff-hanger. God loves His children and watches over us with the tenderest care. The Samaritan denied being an angel, but God made one of him today. He also gave me some anguish to remind me that He spells “relief”
Always Lock Every Vehicle
We no longer live in a world where we can leave His houses and cars unlocked. I just praise and thank Him for his mercies. He always did have a soft spot in His heart for widows and orphans.