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  Pen-Pal Rules

     Thank you so much for being willing to help in our prison ministry by taking a pen-pal. So many men and women in prison have been abandoned by their family and friends, so receiving a letter from a fellow believer is priceless to them. The first letter you write should just be a letter of introduction. Let the inmate know that you got his/her name from our ministry and ask a few questions to help you get to know them and build a foundation for friendship. Some suggestions for your first letter are:
1. Your age
2. How long you have been a Sabbath keeper
3. About your fellowship group
4. Your interests, hobbies and work
5. If you are married / have children
6. Your expectations from your correspondence

We do have a few "rules" of being a pen-pal. They have been set in place to benefit you, your inmate pen-pal and our ministry. 
1. Don't ask about their charges. The mailroom randomly reads incoming mail. For some of these people, having their charges exposed in open mail could get them killed. If a pen-pal wants to tell you, let it be his decision, in his way and in his time. What brought them to prison is not nearly as important as learning to walk in faith and a sincere relationship with our Father.
2. Don't send books or money without checking with me first. There are different rules in different states concerning these things. If the prison rules are not followed, you could lose whatever you wanted to send your pen-pal. It is my job to know the rules and make sure your pen-pal gets the things you want him or her to have.
3. Keep your topics of discussion about spiritual and encouraging things as much as possible. This service is one of learning, support, encouragement and fellowship. It is not for romance or asking for things the inmates want or need. Every inmate in our Pen-Pal Program knows this and what we expect of them. In the past 15 years, we have only had one problem with an inmate writing inappropriate things. He was promptly removed from the pen-pal list.
4. Always be kind and patient with your pen-pal. These guys and gals have led a hard life and are in a hard place. Many have issues with trust and have lots of them have deep wounds and scars. Your purpose in writing is to share the love of our Father with them and give them hope and encouragement. Remember that and let the Holy Spirit be the One who works out any changes that they need to make.
5. Let me know if there are changes to your pen-pal status. For example, if the correspondence with your pen-pal ends, if you desire to add more pen-pals, if you need to suspend being a pen-pal for health or other reasons. 
     Lastly, if you have any questions or problems, let me know so I can address them. It's my job to help and keep things going smoothly. I'm more than glad to do that for you. Being a pen-pal can be a very rewarding experience when done with the guiding of the Ruach haqodesh (Holy Spirit). I pray that you will find your pen-pal experience a blessed and rewarding one.

Lisa Haufler


This page last updated on 06/16/16