THE CANADIAN ASSOCIATION TESTS THE WATERS OF PRISON MINISTRY
March 2011, Roman J. Ciecwierz, KMOb

 

Just in time for the season of Lent, the Canadian Association has begun a foray into Prison Ministry through the distribution of a newsletter to Catholic inmates in Ontario and British Columbia.  This new ministry for the Canadian Association is a joint venture with the American Association of the Order of Malta, who has been publishing such a newsletter since 2009 and currently oversees distribution of 25,000 copies in 25 States.  Working with prison chaplains in these two provinces to start,  “The Serving Brother,” offers “Catholic Spirituality to the Incarcerated.” Recognizing the disparate conditions that Catholic prisoners find themselves in, the publication is intended to represent a “spiritual lifeline” to those readers finding themselves in conditions inhospitable to the Catholic faith.

Professional looking and in full colour, each issue is printed on quality paper, in order to express the same profound sense of respect that the Brothers of the Hospital showed to their guests from the beginning. Common features include teaching from a prelate of the church, daily Mass readings that allow easy participation in the ongoing worship of Our Lord, colorful reproductions of classic masterpieces of sacred art and spiritual counseling offered in a manner that breaks through to this special audience.

Steve Caron, Knight of Magistral Grace and chairman of the editorial board for the American Association says, “Individuals incarcerated in correctional facilities around the globe are, by definition, dispossessed; among those in need we in the Order are obliged to help. In many cases, these persons for the first time in their lives find themselves crying out for God’s mercy,
forgiveness and love.”

A copy of the first 'Canadian' edition can be found in the Epistula section of our website.