Nov 19

The Mail and Cutting Cost


The mailing of Loaves & Fishes Issue 24 in September generated a lot of incoming prisoner mail. Most of the mail simply requires data entry, but some of it takes letter writing or pen pal management, etc. Here is a picture I just took of the incoming mail bin:

Mail Bin

The Lord has blessed us in allowing Jimmy Weaver to join the team here. He has done well in learning our software and workflow, and is looking forward to spending more time here after he retires in December.

Jimmy and I usually get the orders ready for the post office, and we take mail in once or twice a week. Some days it’s mostly a bunch of envelopes containing booklets and tracts, but occasionally we also have a handful of boxes to mail to new chaplains or someone replenishing their inventory.

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Sep 22

Issue 24 Mailing Update


In a recent email newsletter, we announced that we were able to print Loaves & Fishes Issue 24. This is a major milestone, especially since our publishing schedule has been extra slow the last while.

The books arrived at our facility in Bedford, PA last week (September 15). Our printing company does excellent work, and it always feels wonderful to actually page through a new issue after many hours of looking at it on the computer screen.

Two days after the books came, volunteers from our church plus Jimmy (who works in the mail room) and his wife came to prepare the mailing. Several people worked on the single subscriptions while the rest packed the box subscriptions. Most of the people were new to the mailing process; but it went smoothly, and we finished it all in one long evening!

The singles and bulk subscriptions are leaving this week. The postage for all the single subscriptions and bulk boxes together was some over $9,500. We were able to pay the postage with a little money left.

We needed 105,000 booklets to fill current subscriptions, so we printed 110,000 copies. (We always print about 5,000 extra for new orders between issues and for back issue inventory.)

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Jul 26

New Beginnings on Death Row


prisoner behind bars

Excerpt from our latest print newsletter:

There are ten men on death row in Riverbend Maximum Prison here in Nashville, TN. These men are scheduled to die on or before October 7, 2014. Only three of them said they knew about Jesus.

Once a week a minister comes to my cell for prayer before he enters death row to visit. About three months ago, I sent three Art Mayse Bible bookmarks (from Lighthouse) with him. The following Tuesday he reported four saved men. Over a period of a month or more, he took ten Scripture prayer cards from Lighthouse and seven more Bible bookmarks.

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Jul 26

Issue 24 Ready to Print


LF 24 Cover

Sometimes life brings unexpected setbacks and perplexing questions. As the Apostle Paul said, “We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair” (2 Corinthians 4:8, ESV).

I can relate to Paul’s feelings in at least a small way as I consider the adventure and challenges of working in prison ministry. May each of us make his testimony our own—”We are always of good courage” (5:6a).

Loaves & Fishes issue 24 has been waiting to be printed for several months now. As it stands, total copies for the next printing would be 108,000, and the printing will cost $16,000. This number includes 5,000 extra copies to distribute between printings.

Today we have $10,000 on hand, so once we have $9,000 more, we can order the books.

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