The news was in the local newspaper: Clara*, a drug addict and homeless young girl, was condemned to 15 years in jail after she was found guilty of killing a friend under the influence of drugs. Yes, the one in the news was the same Clara who one day, a year ago, started attending our craft workshop in the prison of San Diego Cartagena. I remember how scruffy, lost and confused she looked back then, but gradually we witnessed her transformation, beginning with hearing the word of God and surrendering her heart to Christ.
Today Clara is a very diligent and smart girl with a deep desire to grow in faith and to learn as much as she can to make a worthy living. She is aware that it was Jesus who changed her life. We witnessed her tears the day she learned that she had been convicted. But she knows that her soul and spirit were released from the captivity of sin in this same place where she is physically imprisoned. Today, along with five other inmates, Clara is learning to make sandals. She and her companions are eager to see the final products and start selling them to improve their quality of their lives.
Two years ago, Lourdes Arnedo and I from OM Colombia began to bring the word of God and to teach craft workshops at the women’s prison in Cartagena, Colombia. We taught inmates to make handbags, underwear, bathing caps, Christmas decorations and others items. But sandal making was the most popular. Today, the inmates make simple sandals called “three stitches” and each woman gets to keep the pair she makes. They also make sandals to sell, as the Lord supplies the materials. If you would like to take part by supplying materials, please contact me.
Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison.
* not her real name
Martha, WorldLead Class of 2014, serves with Operation Mobilization Colombia.