Thursday, April 5, 2007

Prison Chaplain Seeks Biblical Help

Los Angeles prison chaplain Rabbi Yossi Carron serves inmates in the largest jail in the US:

"Carron helps prisoners by leading weekly Torah study groups and ministering to individual inmates at each of the half-dozen jails in his chaplaincy. But he said he needs help. He needs books.

'I know that all of you are aware of the transformational work I do serving the Jewish inmates in the largest jails in the United States,' he wrote in a e-mail plea to the Jewish community. 'These men and women are so inspired by the texts of our tradition as they endeavor to turn their lives around. Unfortunately, we have a big problem. Almost no books: Tanakhim, siddurim, Chumashim, Jewish recovery books. My Christian colleagues are distributing the New Testament by the truckloads and I am in dire need of supplies.'

Carron mentions some of his men who are doing well because of their newfound connection to Judaism while they were in prison. He says that 'Ari' has been sober for two and a half years, made restitution for what he did and is now in medical school; 'Mike' has enrolled in USC to complete his last semester and is due to graduate in August; and 'Steven' is now working in mortgage banking.
For a tax-deductible donation, send a check to The Board of Rabbis of Southern California, 6505 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 430, Los Angeles, CA 90049. Write On check: FOR RABBI CARRON'S BOOK/SUPPLYFUND. Or to Rabbi Yossi Carron, Mekom Tikvah: A Place of Hope, 17046 Burbank Blvd. Unit '11, Encino, CA 91316. To see the wishlist of books needed go to and send the books to Rabbi Carron, Men's Central Jail, Office of Religious practices, 441 Bauchet Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012.

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