Dear Faithful Supporters of PiFO,
As we have all traveled through this crazy uncertainty of 2020, one theme has been consistently on my mind—are we victors or are we victims?
“Victor” is defined in the Oxford dictionary as a “person who defeats an enemy or opponent in a battle…” A “victim” is a “person who has been attacked or injured…as the result of a crime, a disease, accident, etc.”
A lot of the time, being a victor or victim, depends upon a person’s perspective. A victor finds reasons to move forward. A victim finds reasons to quit.
These two different mentalities are even more profound in prison. One prisoner sees life from the perspective of a victim—daily drudgery of getting out of bed, going to the mess hall to eat with convicts, feeling sorry for the circumstances he is in. Another sees life from the perspective of a victor—another day to encourage a fellow prisoner, to breathe life and hope into someone and to comfort someone in need.
Let’s focus on Stephen, one of our students attending the Corban extension in the Oregon State Correctional Institution (OSCI). Stephen is serving a lengthy
sentence at OSCI. As you will see, Stephen, focuses on being a victor.
Stephen says “As I have moved forward in my incarceration stay, I have found that being a man of integrity is critical. I believe that education is one of the most
important items in a willing servant’s tool box. In fact, it is written ‘my people perish for a lack of knowledge.’”
Stephen is also a tutor and understands the importance and value of a good education and continued learning. He says “…in this place we have enough time to learn how to do right or how to do wrong. I choose to do right. I choose to help others on their journey through incarceration. I choose to use my faith to set an example for caring and mentoring others. I choose to pay forward all that I learn from the Corban extension so that others will be able to grow and learn to become men of integrity and faith.”
Stephen could have chosen to be a victim. But Stephen has chosen to be a victor in a difficult situation. He has chosen to move forward rather than quit. We have an opportunity to join Stephen and help him march on to victory. We can do this through prayer and financial support. It costs $5500 to provide a one-year scholarship for a student at the Corban extension in OSCI. Maybe you could provide a full scholarship? Or a partial scholarship?
Your gifts are providing for the transformation of hearts, in this world and the world to come.