A Prodigal Christmas

39 'When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ - Matthew 25:39-40

I recently had the pleasure of meeting Pat Blandford and Jennifer Partin of Prodigal Ministries.  They run several aftercare and transitional houses for men and women who have recently been released from prison.  They also team with a bridge program to help inmates adjust to life outside of the institution.  It is an interesting ministry and I enjoyed learning about it.

One of the missions of Real Family is to be a solution to the needs of our community.  We want to offer REAL Hope to all of these REAL people that we meet.  And one of the most REAL needs we have found in Oldham County is that of the formerly incarcerated.  Oldham County boasts not one, but two reformatories (one male and one female), as well as an extensive jail system for those serving smaller sentences.  Once the system is finished with these convicts, they are sent into the world, where most of them find themselves back in old lifestyles and habits.

So, we decided not to reinvent the wheel is meeting this need.  Instead, we have struck up a partnership with Prodigal Ministries.  We will be serving meals on a monthly basis to the men's house prior to their weekly Bible study.  It gives us a chance to feed (one of our favorite ministries), as well as talk to men that may need a helping hand.  All that begins in January of 2018 and we are thrilled.

In December, we have asked if we can provide Christmas gifts to the ladies of McCauley House.  There are currently 3 residents who are attempting to transition into "normal" life.  We want to make them feel special.

Can you help us?

We are asking our Real Family to bring in wrapped gifts (in multiples of 3) that would be appreciated by women of various ages and backgrounds.  Whether you want to gift lotions or florals doesn't matter to us, so long as it tells these women that they are important to us.  We will  be collecting at the church food pantry for the next few weeks and ask that you remember them when you are shopping.

As I was sitting in Pat's office at Prodigal, she asked me why I feel the Lord called us to do work with cons.  I didn't really have an answer.  I can't say that God woke me up one day and said, "Do this."  But, I know that Matthew 25 quotes Jesus as specifically talking about visiting prisoners.  So, I guess that He has called us ALL to work with them.

You see, there are no second class citizens in God's kingdom.  There are children.  His children.  And we are all family together.

Merry Prodigal Christmas to us all!

If you would like to learn more about Prodigal Ministries, visit their website at

Matt Monyhan

Matt Monyhan is the Lead Pastor of Real Family Church. He has been in ministry for almost 2 decades and is a husband and father of 2 sons.