I entitled this post something a bit out of the ordinary in hopes to draw as much attention as possible and gain much feedback as well. Attention, not to myself, but attention to the growing need we are finding in our churches and society as a whole. This need is found within those families (particularly spouses with children), who have a husband or wife in prison. Also a need among grandparents who are finding themselves in the role of second-time parenting (more on parenting as grandparents later in the post). My specific purpose in this post is to try and gain as much insight from these families as to what their greatest needs might be in order to be more informed and equipped to better meet some of those needs personally and through the church.
As a pastor’s wife, church life is a “normal zone” for me. My days revolve around ministering to others’ needs, working around others’ schedules, and looking for better ways in which to serve in the Kingdom of God. I gladly embrace that role; however, there are times that I need much input in areas in which I am not equipped or adequately informed. More and more, I am finding that God is placing in my path those (in my case, wives/mothers) whose spouse has been incarcerated. This is an area that I am asking for feedback and input from those who might read this blog.
Whether I know you or not, I would like to hear from you if you have an incarcerated spouse. You may remain anonymous, and you WILL NOT be contacted unless you specifically request a reply. I simply would like to hear what your greatest needs are, particularly as a woman/wife/mother, of an incarcerated spouse. I would like to personally be informed as to how to reach out to those in your situation, but I would also like to develop some material that might help others address these same type needs.
In the past, some of my family members have been imprisoned. However, my spouse has never been in prison; therefore, my ability to relate, especially to a young mother of small children whose Daddy is in prison, is very limited. I am not here to judge, give advise, or ask probing questions — I simply want to be more informed on how to minister and love those whom God is placing in my path. What, as a spouse of someone in prison, are your greatest needs (whether physically, monetarily, emotionally, or spiritually)? And how can the church better minister to you and your family?
Grandparents in Parenting Roles
In addition, I am looking for feedback from grandparents who have taken on the role of being the primary caregivers to their grandchildren. There are more ministry resources available on this particular role as opposed to those who have incarcerated family members (I can share some of those upon request); however, I would like to hear from this group as well. If you are a grandparent who is raising your grandchildren, would you share with me your greatest needs? How can the church better minister to you and your family?
To both groups, and whomever would welcome prayer support, I would love to have the privilege to pray for you. Please feel free to send me your prayer request and I will join with you in bringing this matter to the throne-room of heaven before of God who knows your needs, hears your prayers, and cares deeply about your life.
If you would be willing to share (anonymously) your thoughts, please either respond to this blog-post or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
I would also ask, whether or not you find yourself in either of these groups, that you share this post with your friends in order that this might gain much valuable input from those who are walking these roads.
Thank you in advance.