I was back at my main ministry tonight, ministering at Rayburn Prison!
I missed a couple of my weekly rotations due to this ongoing knee treatment and still I received a treatment today. Despite the pain and the stiff knee from the medicine in the injection, I was concerned about the long walk to the chapel. And then the rain fell. I never have experienced rain upon arrival at Rayburn and on the subsequent walk to the back of the compound. Imagine that; I've been going to Rayburn since 2009 and this had never happened before, until tonight!
I arrived to a chapel filled with almost 50 inmates ready to worship God. A standard communion service with the day's readings and prayers, today in honor of St. Bartholomew. I had several personal ministering opportunities tonight; one inmate told me his mother had passed away this week. We prayed for mama Martha. Another inmate, about to be released, found out his assigned half-way house was a victim of the flood. For him, this means an indefinite delay of his release. So we prayed for a swift resolution to the situation.
Complete with songs and hymns from our ever growing choir, we offered pray, proclaimed the days readings, I preached on the Gospels, the men offered heartfelt prayers of the faithful, the majority of the men received Jesus in Holy Communion and we had silent reflection before prayer, blessing and dismissal.
No matter what; a tough week, painful knees, perhaps too many distractions and things on my mind, bad weather, no matter what; I always am lifted spiritually by these ministry visits to Rayburn Prison!