On August 4, 2015, Victoria Bekiempis wrote an article on Newsweek.com, titled, “Suicide Rate In U.S. Jails Jumps.” The article stated: “In 2013, 327 inmates killed themselves, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. The local jail suicide rate went up from 40 to 46 inmate suicides per 100,000, for example. Since 2009, the jail suicide rate has shot up 12 percent. ‘As in every year since 2000, suicide was the leading cause of death in local jails, accounting for more than a third (34 percent) of all jail deaths in 2013,’ the report says.”
For many who have been jailed, thoughts of failure, of losing family, of life being over, or even simple embarrassment can cause thoughts of suicide. Praying family and friends can make the difference in a person not committing suicide. Luke 22:31-32 (KJV) 31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: 32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren. Let’s continually pray for our loved ones behind bars that their faith doesn’t fail. Suicidal thoughts are rampant behind bars.
In Matthew 25: 31-46, we are called to visit those who are in prison. Though it is not always possible to visit, any type of contact will be reassuring to your loved one. For those who have lost hope, a note of reassurance may be enough to remind them that they are loved and help them reach out again for that glimmer of hope.
From time to time we have extra copies of our Bible study for inmates so you may find a copy of this month’s Bible study included in this newsletter. Please enjoy it yourself or share it with your loved one in prison. We can send them to inmates if we have at least 50 at a location who are interested in receiving it and an official there who is willing to receive and distribute them. Don’t forget anyone can receive a copy of this Newsletter by emailing or mailing us their name and address. They can also receive the Newsletter by email.
We send the books, Bible Study and this Newsletter free of charge. Pray about helping us on a monthly basis by donating any amount. Anything you are able to do will be greatly appreciated.
Yours in Christ,
Pastor Frank M. Bafford, Sr.