Prison Ministry Partnership: Ways to participate

Prison Ministry Partnership: Ways to participate


Submitted by Rev. Melanie Martin-Dent
Interim Pastor at Grace UMC Dillon

One of the desired outcomes for our conversations is strengthening all of our prison ministries by sharing information and encouraging members of our churches to get involved. Our core team is passionate about working with people affected by incarceration. As one of our volunteers recently said, “I got involved to be of service to God and to others, but I find that every time I go to the prison I am given more than I am able to give.” You can experience this for yourself by:

  • Praying for these ministries and the people involved in all aspects of the criminal justice system.
  • Attending worship services or Bible studies at the Montana Women’s Prison in Billings or at the Men’s Prison in Deer Lodge.
  • Being on a leadership team for retreats: Homeward Bound (ecumenical Walk to Emmaus/Cursillo retreat) or Kogudus (Lutheran) retreats.
  • Mentoring a returning citizen who has paid their debt to society.Donating gently used casual or business wear in Billings.
  • Attending Healing Communities training to develop a ministry to persons returning from or at risk of incarceration, and their families in your own church and community.
  • Donating art work or quilted items for a fundraiser. Freedom in Christ Prison ministry receives about a third of its support from the national ELCA and local Montana Synod with the rest coming from fundraisers and donations.
  • Attending a Freedom in Christ fundraiser:
    • Saturday, June 25: Dinner, silent auction, and concert by Johnny Cash tribute band C Steve Music at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Missoula, Montana.
    • Sunday, October 9: Online quilt auction at various locations in the state, including Billings, Great Falls, Sidney and more.
To volunteer or contribute contact the following people:
  • Worship, Bible Study, retreats, mentoring or clothing donations in Billings: Pastor Wendy Ochs at Evangelical United Methodist Church: 406-259-1897 or
  • Worship, Bible Study, retreats, mentoring in other areas: Pastor Rob Nedbalek, Freedom in Christ Prison Ministries at 406-694-5267 or
  • Kogudus Retreat: Pastor Greg Karlsgodt, 406-544-1699 or
  • Donations or tickets for fundraisers: Bea Rosenleaf, 406-560-4993 or
  • Healing Communities training: Pastor Melanie Martin-Dent, 406-560-6371 or

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