Among state prisoners released in 30 states in 2005— About two-thirds (67.8%) of released prisoners were arrested for a new crime within 3 years, and three-quarters (76.6%) were arrested within 5 yearsAlexia D. Cooper, Ph.D.
Matthew R. Durose
Howard N. Snyder, Ph.D.
April 22, 2014
Many ex-offenders are maladjusted to society, having to deal with the stigma that comes with being an ex-offender, in addition to their own personal struggles and habits that led to criminal behavior in the first place. Crime is ultimately an action of the heart.
When offenders are offered programs that combine Christian teaching, discipleship, mentoring, job training, transitional housing and other support services, the recidivism rate drops dramatically.
Jump Start has proven this by having a much lower recidivism rate for those that complete the program.
Unfortunately, rehabilitation in today’s prisons is almost non-existent, reduced to a few scattered programs in a few prisons that do nothing to change the human heart. Faith-based programs can reach the human heart like no other way. These programs infuse hope, provide a healthy self-esteem, give a purpose for living, and introduce the God who is more powerful than our weaknesses.
How Jump Start Does It
Jump Start employs Biblical discipleship, which is the process of mentoring individuals to a fuller and deeper relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.
- It connects ex-offenders to their only life source and causes them to rely on Christ rather than their own strengths, feelings, attitudes, or actions.
- It reduces crime by helping people lessen the importance and impact of material things, attitudes and addictions. Instead, we lead ex-offenders to depend solely on the blessings and mercies of Jesus Christ.
- It takes the ex-offender out of the world’s method of operation and into the Bible’s method of operation. Since the Bible is anti-crime, those who adhere to the Bible’s teachings will also become anti-crime. Eventually, they will even join efforts to stop others from committing the same crimes they did. This is the beauty of the Gospel.
This program also prevents homelessness and puts ex-offenders and former addicts in a positive Christian environment.
Ex-offenders who enter this program and successfully complete it will return to society as changed individuals, determined to be law-abiding, taxpaying citizens, and determined to help others do the same.