AOPM at Efland United Methodist Church

We had a great time this past Sunday at Efland United Methodist Church. Our Ready Singers choir performed and Douglas and Rodney from Orange Correctional shared their testimonies. AOPM board member Aaron Griffith preached the sermon. Thanks to all who came out!

AOPM, on the road

Come out and see Chaplain Love and the Ready Singers choir at a location near you! Contact us if you would like more info about any of these events. Here’s our up-to-date schedule:

Name of Church/Event  Location Date Departure/Arrival Time 
NC Department of Public Safety Volunteer Banquet Raleigh, NC Thu, April 27, 2017 10am-2pm
Efland United Methodist Church Efland, NC Sun, April 30, 2017 10am-2pm
Mt. Carmel Baptist Church Chapel Hill, NC Wed, May 10, 2017 6pm-10pm
Church of the Holy Family Chapel Hill, NC Sun, May 21, 2017 8am-1 2pm
Church of Philadelphia Durham, NC Sun, June 25, 2017 10am-2pm
First Calvary Baptist Church Durham, NC Sun, July 16, 2017 2:30pm-6:30pm
Efland United Methodist Church Efland, NC Sun, July 30, 2017 10am-2pm
Christ United Methodist Church Chapel Hill, NC Sun, Aug 27, 2017 10am-2pm
Community Baptist Church Durham, NC September 24, 2017 7am-11am
Efland United Methodist Church Efland, NC Sun, October 29, 2017 10am-2pm
Efland United Methodist Church Efland, NC Sun, December 31, 2017 10am-2pm

Ready Singers at Duke Divinity School

Today Chaplain Love and the Ready Singers choir visited Duke Divinity School. The Ready Singers led worship during chapel, while Chaplain Love preached a message to the gathered faculty and students. Thanks to Duke Divinity's Prison & Justice Action Committee for the invitation!

Ready Singers Perform at UNC Hospital

The Ready Singers choir visited UNC-Chapel Hill hospital to perform for their Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration. As always, they sounded great!

New volunteer training

NEW VOLUNTEER TRAINING has been scheduled for Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 6 pm. It will be in the Peace Center at Orange Correctional Center. This will be for both new on-site and new off-site volunteers. Seating is limited, so please be discerning about whether you want to reserve one of the chairs (and become an active volunteer at OCC). To be considered you must be at least:  1) 21 with a valid, government-issued, picture id. 2) a year off correctional supervision 3) you cannot be a family member of any resident at OCC or on a resident’s visitation list.

On the applications, you will need to provide NCDPS with your driver’s license and social security number (for background check purposes). You will also need to provide character references.

If you wish to be trained, please contact chaplainjlove@gmail.com and save yourself a spot. Those who respond quickly will be given priority.

On 3/9/2017, the training schedule will look as follows:

  • 5:45Registration (sign in and begin application paperwork)
  • 6-7pmrequired training for ALL new volunteers.  On-site will be dismissed around 7pm (yokefellows, tutors, worship/study leaders)
  • 7-9:30pmrequired training for new off-site (sponsors) CONTINUES after training, off-site volunteers will need to attend three on-site activities before becoming sponsors.

If you are uncertain about whether you want to be a volunteer/sponsor, contact chaplainjlove@gmail.com or the Programs department (919-732-9301)

Pecan and stew success!

Thanks to all who contributed to AOPM's fall fundraiser, either by purchasing pecans and Brunswick stew or volunteering with prep and distribution. A special thanks goes out to Lamb's Chapel in Haw River, NC, who provides our stew. Because of your work and contributions AOPM is able to continue ministering to the men at Orange Correctional Center. Also, if you missed out on placing a pecan or stew order (or want some more) let us know - we have some extras!

Parent Day at OCC

ovc-002Parent Day at Orange Correctional Center began with growing excitement, a bit of nervousness, and 30 pumpkins. It came to a close with those same pumpkins showing the creative talents of kids and their fathers, smiles and tears, and our tradition of going around the room and asking everyone – children, fathers, volunteers, and staff – to share what they liked best about the day. The four hours in between were filled with board games, corn hole toss (with pretty intense competition, as usual!), family pictures, pumpkin decorating, a book display that kids could pick books from, read with their fathers and take home, lunch prepared by the prison’s cook school, talk, laughter, and together time.

dscn0816Thanks to Our Children’s Place for organizing the day, St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Hillsborough for hosting the caregivers, Chapel Hill Restaurant Group for donating rolls for lunch, and Trader Joe’s in Chapel Hill for donating pumpkins. We were excited to learn that the pumpkins won second place in the Coastal Horizons Center’s Pumpkin Decorating Contest!

Of course, Parent Day could not happen without the dedicated team of volunteers who lend their time and talents and the OCC staff members who provide needed support!

--reported by Melissa W. Radcliff, Program Director for Our Children's Place

OCC canned food drive

The correctional officers at Orange Correctional Center screen-shot-2016-10-28-at-9-23-05-pm
have partnered with Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry to collect canned goods for families in North Carolina who were affected by Hurricane Matthew. We invite all friends of AOPM to support this important cause. We will be collecting donations from October 28-November 15, 2016. A donation box will be located in the Peace Center at Orange Correctional Center, or you can contact Chaplain Love to arrange a drop off  - (919) 732-9301 or chaplainjlove@gmail.com.
Thank you for your support!

Volunteer and sponsor training

Volunteers and sponsors are such an important part of what we do at AOPM. Volunteers are involved with programming onsite at Orange Correctional Center, while sponsors are able to take men from OCC out into the community. If you would like to become an on-site volunteer or a sponsor at OCC, the next volunteer training will be held in March 2017. To sign up for this training please email Chaplain Love at chaplainjlove@gmail.com with your name, email, phone number, and address. Please specify whether your interested in being a sponsor or an on-site volunteer. Thanks to all the wonderful contributors to the work of AOPM!

 

 

Get Your Pecans and Stew!

12829035_246917352310484_559537445145894449_oIt’s that time of the year again! Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry is having its annual pecan and Brunswick stew sale. This fundraiser is AOPM’s main source of funding, and all proceeds go toward supporting our full-time chaplain and putting on programming for the men at Orange Correctional Center. Stew is $8.00 per quart (and can be frozen), and the shelled pecans are $13.00/lb. Both are delicious, and make great gifts. If you are interested in purchasing either to support the mission of AOPM, please fill out this order form and mail it in, or contact us via phone or email.

Orders are due November 4. Pecans and stew can be picked up on Saturday, November 19 at 9am at the Peace Center.

Thank you for your support!

Clothing donations needed

screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-7-49-25-amMany of the men here at Orange Correctional Center regularly travel outside of the facility. Some are on work release, while others go out with volunteer sponsors. Either way, the men appreciate having access to clothing that allows them to better fit into the surrounding community. Because many of the men here do not have easy access to good quality street clothes, we welcome clothing donations. We are especially in need of jeans and khaki pants (size 38 and up) and polo and button-down style shirts (size XL and up). We can accept new clothing or pieces that are gently used.

If you or your church would like to make a clothing donation or if you have any questions, please contact Chaplain Jerry Love at chaplainjlove@gmail.com. Thank you for your support of AOPM!

Ministry Update

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, As chaplain at Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry, I see everyday how local churches help us fulfill our mission to give spiritual support to the men at Orange Correctional Center. From providing financial contributions, helping us host events, or sending us wonderful volunteers, churches are such an important part of who we are – we simply couldn’t do it without them.

It would take me many more pages to list all the specific ways that churches help AOPM in its work, but I’d like to tell you about one recent time when a local church has blessed us. Just a few weeks ago I received a call from a member of Church of the Holy Family in Chapel Hill. Our Ready Singers choir (made up of several men from here at OCC) was in need of some new musical instruments, and Holy Family wanted to help out. The church provided the funds for AOPM to purchase a new keyboard and drum set for the choir. The Ready Singers have never sounded better!

aopm-instruments-2016

The praise songs that our choir plays on these instruments are audible signs of how God is at work at OCC and how the men incarcerated here are being empowered to use their own gifts and abilities in service to God’s kingdom.

Whether or not your church partners with AOPM, we still would love your individual support. I invite you to consider a financial gift of $50, $100, or $200. Every donation directly impacts our ministry and is a blessing to the men here at OCC. You can send your financial gift to P.O. Box 9932 Chapel Hill, NC 27515.

Blessings,

Jerry Love, Chaplain

P.S. – in order to better communicate with our supporters, we are collecting email addresses. If you would like to receive communications from AOPM electronically, please provide us with your email address here.

Ready Singers Update

The Ready Singers are the choir made up of residents here at Orange Correctional Center. They sing hymns and praise songs and frequently perform at our weekly Yokefellows gatherings and other prison events. They also sing at local churches and out in the community. If you are interested in catching the Ready Singers when they are in your neighborhood, please join us at one of their upcoming performances (see the calendar below). And though their schedule is filling up fast for the rest of the year, please contact Chaplain Love if you are interested in having the Ready Singers perform at your church.

  • August 21 – Universalist Church, Hillsborough, NC
  • September 11 – Swepsonville Baptist Church, Graham, NC
  • September 18 – Refuge Temple Church, Burlington, NC
  • September 25 – Community Baptist Church, Durham, NC
  • October 16 – Shady Hill Baptist, Roxboro, NC
  • October 23 – Antioch Baptist Church, Durham, NC
  • November 19 – First Calvary Baptist Church, Durham, NC

One Day with God

This past Saturday Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry was blessed to be a part of Forgiven Ministry’s “One Day With God” event. One Day With God is a time for incarcerated people to visit with their families, enjoy games, crafts, and a meal together, and hear a message of God’s love for all people. AOPM’s Chaplain Love took several men from Orange Correctional to this year’s One Day With God, hosted at Orange United Methodist Church in Chapel Hill. Chaplain Love had this to say about this fantastic event: "One of the greatest joys in life is to be a father. One of the greatest privileges is to spend quality time with your children. The One Day with God Camp at Orange UMC provided the residents at OCC to once again experience the joys of being a father by allowing them to spend quality time with their children. It was a blessing to be a part of this experience."

Parent Day

Parent Day Photo 1 The bright winter sunshine outside spilled into the Peace Center, creating a bright and warm spot for Parent Day in early February.

Sixteen children and their fathers (12 in total) spent the day together playing board games and corn hole toss (with some pretty intense competition!), decorating wooden “treasure boxes,” eating lunch prepared by men at the cook school, picking out books (the result of a 4H club book drive) for the children to take home, talking, laughing, and learning a bit more about each other. As always, saying Parent Day Photo 3good-bye at the end was difficult.

parent day photo 4During our debriefing session with the men, a number of them made a point of saying how much they appreciated the one-on-one time with their children which allowed them to have longer and more in-depth conversations than they can during regular visitation.

 

Thanks to the wonderful community volunteers, Our Children’s Place, and the staff at OCC for making the day possible.

~Melissa Radcliffe

Volunteer/sponsor training scheduled

A NEW VOLUNTEER TRAINING has been scheduled for Thursday, March 31, 2016 at 6pm. It will be in the Peace Center at Orange Correctional Center. This will be for both new on-site and new off-site volunteers. Seating is limited, so please be discerning about whether you want to reserve one of the chairs (and become an active volunteer at OCC). To be considered you must be at least: 1) 21 with a valid, government-issued, picture id. 2) a year off correctional supervision 3) you cannot be a family member of any resident at OCC or on a resident’s visitation list.

On the applications, you will need to provide NCDPS with your driver’s license and social security number (for background check purposes). You will also need to provide character references.

If you wish to be trained, please contact chaplainjlove@gmail.com and save yourself a spot. Those who respond quickly will be given priority.

On 3/31/2016, the training schedule will look as follows:

  • 5:45pm Registration (sign in and begin application paperwork)
  • 6-7pm required training for ALL new volunteers. On-site will be dismissed around 7pm (yokefellows, tutors, worship/study leaders)
  • 7-9:30pm required training for new off-site (sponsors) CONTINUES after training, off-site volunteers will need to attend three on-site activities before becoming sponsors.

If you are uncertain about whether you want to be a volunteer/sponsor, contact chaplainjlove@gmail.com or the Programs department (919-732-9301)

Gift of the Month

Help the ministry by collecting these items which are given to inmates who are considered indigent and receive less than $30.00 a month from all sources. Contact Chaplain Love at chaplainjlove@gmail.com if you wish to drop off donated hygiene items to the Peace Center.

  • January – Deodorant, stick or solid only
  • February – Toothpaste, 6-8 oz.
  • March – Lotion, average size (20 fl. oz.)
  • April – Shampoo (15oz-23oz)
  • May – Soap (3oz or more)
  • June – Deodorant, stick or solid only
  • July – Toothpaste, 6-8 oz.
  • August – Lotion, average size (20 fl. oz.)
  • September – Shampoo (15oz-23oz)
  • October – Soap (3oz or more)
  • November – Deodorant, stick or solid only
  • December – Toothpaste, 6-8 oz.

Brunswick stew and Pecan Fundraiser 2015

It’s Brunswick stew and pecan sale time once again! Those interested in purchasing or selling, the specifics for pick-up follow: Saturday, November 14, 2015 Time: 9:00 am until 12pm Place: Orange Correctional Peace Center parking lot Price: $8.00 per quart for stew; $13.00 lb. for shelled pecan halves

Make checks payable to: Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry (or AOPM)

Contact Chaplain Love (chaplainjlove@gmail.com) or (919) 732-9301 with your orders by November 14, 2015

For those who inquire the proceeds from the stew will be applied to the general budget of our prison ministry. We thank Tom Britt and The Lamb’s Chapel Church for supplying us with great pecans and stew.

An introduction letter from Chaplain Love

Dear AOPM Supporters, I feel blessed that God has called me to serve as the chaplain for Alamance Orange Prison Ministry and for providing me with the opportunity to minister to and alongside so many wonderful people!

I was born and raised in Savannah, Georgia. I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and personal Savior in spring 2005 and was baptized at Jonesville Baptist Church in Savannah, Georgia. I was licensed to the Gospel ministry in 2013 at First Baptist Church and ordained on November 1, 2015 at First Calvary Baptist Church in Durham, NC.

I relocated to Raleigh, North Carolina in 2006 to attend school at Shaw University. I received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Religion and Philosophy with a minor in Sociology from Shaw University in December 2009. I am currently pursuing a Masters of Divinity degree at Campbell University Divinity School with a concentration in Missions andEvangelism. I am scheduled to complete my coursework at Campbell University DivinitySchool in December 2015.

I recently served as a volunteer Chaplain at Central Prison in Raleigh, North Carolina. I have had the privilege for the past two years to serve in this capacity. I have led and preached at the Sunday worship services for individuals who are currently serving life sentences or on death row. The experience has been life changing and has brought a deeper understanding of my perspective of ministry and counseling. I am very passionate about this sub-population and feel called to this ministry.

Last year, I was invited to Butner Federal Prison to deliver the commencement speech for more than 50 graduates. As a result, I was invited back by the Complex Mentor Coordinator to conduct a monthly workshop for individuals looking to re-enter society. The theme for the workshop was “How to turn your liability into an asset”. The workshop focused on paradigm shifts for residents re-entering society and included cover-letter and resume building, mocked interviews, etc. I also volunteered at Butner Federal Prison as a Motivational Speaker when requested by the Complex Mentor Coordinator.

I also served as an Associate Minister at First Calvary Baptist Church in Durham, North Carolina, where Dr. Frederick A. Davis serves as the Senior Pastor. I am currently serving with the Onesiphorus Prison Ministry that assist men and women who are returning back into our society after incarceration.

Previously, I served as an Associate Minister at First Baptist Church in Raleigh, North Carolina from (2012-2015). I served as a facilitator and teacher for the Homeless Transition Ministry and the Young Adult Sunday School (Y.A.S.S).

I currently reside in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with my lovely wife, Shelly-Ann M. Love and our son Jerry L. Love III.

Peace and blessings,

Jerry L. Love

Transition Announcement

Dear AOPM supporters, I am writing to tell you that my season at Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry is coming to an end. August 31 will be my last day as chaplain. First Mennonite Church (Lincoln, NE) has called me to be their pastor, and Laura and I have accepted the call. We are excited about congregational ministry in Lincoln, and we are excited to be closer to our families.  

I have a heavy heart as I begin to say farewell. The past few years of ministry among the men, volunteers, and staff at Orange Correctional Center have been incredibly fulfilling. Both personally and professionally, I am grateful for your diverse and gracious witness. My family and I have been blessed by your support, patience, and encouragement. I thank you for the ways in which you have shaped (and will continue to shape) my understanding of ministry and theology.

I am hopeful about AOPM’s future. As you continue to provide space for formative worship, study, and fellowship at Orange Correctional, I am confident that your ministry and support will shape the next chaplain.  

I pray for the future of AOPM. I pray especially for clarity as God leads you to your next chaplain. I thank you, and will miss you and this ministry at Orange greatly. 

Sincerely,

Dave Nickel, Chaplain Alamance-Orange Prison Ministry P.O. Box 9932 Chapel Hill, NC 27515

P.S.: I thank you for continuing to support AOPM through this time of transition. Applications are coming in, and the search committee will begin interviewing July 15. Please click here to see our online job description. Feel free to share with any qualified candidates that may be interested.