In God’s Service
August 2010

“In God’s Service,” Ensign, Aug. 2010, 60–61

In God’s Service

I was born into an LDS family and was raised knowing right from wrong. I did not stay active in the Church, and I made some poor choices. Herein lies the reason for my present situation. I am in prison.

But that’s not the story I want to share. Rather, I want to share the story of the many Latter-day Saint volunteers who come to the prisons to minister to, teach, listen to, and pray with those of us who are members of the Church or former members of the Church who have followed paths of alcohol, drugs, pornography, gambling, or crime.

They come to us for the first time with trepidation. They are not sure what to expect. They are even a little frightened. What they find when they arrive, for the most part, are people who are also frightened. Most inmates, if not all, want to learn how not to hurt others anymore. We wish we could have another chance.

That’s why we attend services with the volunteers. From them we learn the true meaning of service and brotherly love. They teach us about repentance and the Savior’s Atonement for our sins. We learn that all is not lost.

They teach us other things too. Some play the piano, some teach choir, some come out twice a month to share family home evening. The volunteers help us learn how to teach Sunday School and priesthood preparation classes. They give us blessings when we are ill or when we are having difficulty dealing with our environment. They are dedicated to their task, and we love them for it.

With the support of these volunteers, I read the Book of Mormon for the first time. (I’ve read it several times since.) I have learned how I can return to the Church after I have finished my sentence. My wife, who was not a member of the Church, saw the sincerity of the volunteers and the testimony they helped instill in me. She decided to learn more about the Church, and with the help of the brothers and sisters in my home ward, she has been baptized and received a temple recommend.

Because of the volunteers’ teachings, support, and love, I have come to know our Savior, Jesus Christ. I know that the Church is true. I also know that these volunteers are special people, blessed by the Lord and called to minister to us. May God continue to bless them for their generosity and unselfishness.