Although we had to postpone our large Returning Hearts Celebration event at Angola Prison in Louisiana, a few days ago we were able to have a Returning Hearts Celebration (RHC) event at Walker State Prison in Georgia. The event was led by Lifeline partner, HeartBound Ministries. Inmates who completed four Malachi Dads curriculum books in the past three years were able to enjoy time with their children and grandchildren.

One grandfather told Lifeline Global Executive Director Mike Broyles, “I met my grandson today for the first time.”

“I cannot begin to express the joy I felt,” says Dr. Romney Ruder, President. “How wonderful it was to spend time with men who have been training and have a desire to be better men and Godly fathers. I am not going to lie, the day was filled with a ton of emotion (those who have participated in RHC before understand this).”

An 82-year-old volunteer said, “I am ready to come back next Saturday if they want to do another RHC.”

What a wonderful day of fathers/grandfathers and children playing, laughing, and getting reconnected.

“I am always amazed by my clash of inner feelings both of which elicit tears: the sadness of the situation which causes parent and child to be separated, and the joy that is experienced when a child runs into its father’s arms,” Romney said.

“I do not know how the love of God can be expressed any better.”

Several dads and children came to faith in Christ as well. Only God!

We are hoping that this graduation is the first of many.

By the Numbers

  • 25 families participated in RHC

  • 49 children spent the day with their Dad/Grandfather/Uncle

  • 76 volunteers worked tirelessly to make the program a success

  • 1,200 hot dogs were cooked and promptly eaten

Event photos courtesy of Lifeline Global Ministries partner HeartBound Ministries. You can read more about their work HERE.