Letter from Edwin Smith

Executive Director
Dove Prison Ministry International

The death row inmates are now settling into their new "home" at the Terrell Unit in Livingston, Texas. I have served these men as their spiritual advisor and chaplain for one year and now God has once again opened the door for me to visit them at their cells. I will be giving weekly reports on my visits and keeping everyone updated on the conditions and on their pen pals. If you have a special concern please advise me and I will address them on my visits and report the findings to you. I have met and now have a good working relationship with the warden of Terrell. I know that just as men of old in the Bible found favor with Kings and Pharohs during times of trial, God has given me favor with this man. He has made it possible for us to continue our ministry on a level not possible before. Although the conditions at any prison are sometimes harsh and unthinkable we must realize that in order to bring about change we must direct our efforts in the proper channels and with the right methods. We should continue to report any reports of abuse to the proper authorities and to send our petitions to those who have the power to bring change. It is my sincere belief that if we bring confrontation or cause the prison officials to feel
challenged then they will respond with even more harsh treatment for those we are trying to help. Our efforts, if not properly conducted, will only serve to bring hard times to those we love. As one who has personally spoken to many of the prison officials and having been inside to observe for myself, I know they feel they are trying to enforce the rules given to them
by the state. As in any job there are good people and bad people. We MUST NOT allow our emotions to lash out in anger at those we feel are doing the injustice. To react in this manner will bring us down to their level. I feel in my heart it is vital to our cause for them to see that we truly are working for change and doing so in a humane and coordinated manner. Please
trust me and allow me to be your "eyes" and "ears" inside Terrell. Together we can win the confidence and trust of those in charge and I believe change will come. If you disagree with my thoughts please understand that we can still disagree and work for the good of those whom we love. It is their lives that we are so desparately trying to touch. Do not let your
disagreement with anything I say or do cause you to bring division in our ranks. May God richly bless each of you and I look forward to working with all. If you would like more information on how you can be involved in our ministry please contact me at fomm99@wnonline.net. In order to further this work we are in great need of people who will send donations each month.
Edwin Smith
Executive Director
Dove Prison Ministry International