What does a prison inmate value most? High on the list, I would venture to guess, is someone on the outside who cares.
When we receive a website request for a new single magazine subscription, the subject line of the email contains the name of the recipient. When I see such a request, I realize that this particular inmate has someone on the outside who cares about them.
I occasionally visit a friend who is serving a 15-40 year sentence. Six years in, the only others who visit him are his wife and elderly parents. Each of us drives 4-6 hours for the visits, making the trip only several times per year. Still, my friend considers himself privileged, because many inmates receive no visitors at all.
Receiving Loaves & Fishes is not the same as having a friend on the outside, but to many of our readers, it represents a meaningful contact with fellow believers in Jesus. This contact is made possible by those of you who distribute the magazine, donate, or in some other way partner with us. God bless you.
—Mike Fisher, operations manager
Since 2014, Lighthouse Publishing has been a ministry of Burning Bush Mennonite Church in Bedford, Pennsylvania. Prior to that, it was a ministry of Pikeville Christian Fellowship in Pikeville, Tennessee. It was founded by Darold Gingerich in the early 1990s. Lighthouse Publishing began as a multi-faceted print shop, but over the years became focused on publishing Loaves & Fishes.
Effective January 1, 2023, the ministry will undergo another organizational change, becoming 501c3 incorporated as Lighthouse Publishing. The new organization is an integrated auxiliary of Hope Mennonite Fellowship, a network of ten conservative Mennonite congregations in Pennsylvania.
The ministry will carry on operations at our facility in Bedford, Pennsylvania. Our 11-member Advisory Board is being invited to continue in its current role. We are continuing with our current editorial team at this time. Darold Gingerich, our founder, will continue to curate reader-submitted material for the magazine, and Lavern Gingerich will remain available for consulting.
Most of all, Lighthouse Publishing will continue to need you. The scale of our work requires the support of a broad donor base and the inspired energy of distributors who get the magazines into prisons and jails across the country. We cannot overstate how much our ministry depends on those of you who receive this newsletter.
Our mission as a new organization is to steward well the ministry of Lighthouse Publishing. With God’s help, we commit to support, maintain, and grow the work of providing Christian believers in prison with literature and tools to help them succeed as disciples of Jesus.
A final change we must announce is the retirement of Jimmy Weaver at the end of 2022. After retiring from his “real” career in 2014, Jimmy devoted countless hours of time to our ministry and to the prison inmates we serve. Working in mail processing for the past 7 years, he has been the point of contact for many of our readers and distributors. We are deeply grateful for his service, and know that God will reward him for it.
The week of November 14, we shipped the bulk and single copy subscriptions of Loaves & Fishes issue #47. The cost of printing was around $24,000, an increase of around $6,000 from our last issue. This delayed the shipping of this issue by several weeks.
The postage cost was around $8,500. Our circulation is around 79,000 copies. With around 10,000 additional copies purchased for inventory, our total cost of printing and shipping this issue was about 40¢ per copy. With all other associated expenses for this issue paid, such as editing, design, and supplies, we have a bank account balance of around $4,500.
The shipment was prepared by around 30 volunteers, including the board members of Lighthouse Publishing and their families. We enjoyed a great evening of work and fellowship. For photos and videos of our packing events, and other updates, search for Loaves & Fishes Magazine on Facebook.
We are currently preparing the content for an issue of Loaves & Fishes focused on the Holy Spirit. Our readers will be challenged to know what it means to be filled with the Spirit of God.
As always, we want our readers to gain knowledge that will help them grow in their life with Jesus. Pray for our editors and writers, and pray that our content would make a real difference.
Our work is energized when we feel your support. No matter whether you are giving your time in sharing our magazines in the prisons, or supporting us financially, you mean so much to us!