NORCO, Calif. - Almost 900 inmates in California prisons are taking part in a seminary training program that teachers hope will lead them to plant churches and evangelize on the outside.
The program was built from an experiment begun four years ago by The Urban Ministry Institute at the California Rehabilitation Center in Norco, southeast of Los Angeles. Now it's being funded with a $2 million donation and is expanding to 18 prisons.
World Impact developed the seminary curriculum to target poor communities and partnered with Prison Fellowship Ministries to offer the rigorous, three-and-half year course behind prison walls. The partnership between the two evangelical organizations graduated 10 men last year and expects to graduate 14 more next year.
Prisons in Michigan, Florida and Colorado have also started classes.
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