Cell block at Deer Ridge Correctional Institution in Madras.
Cell block at Deer Ridge Correctional Institution in Madras.

I was recently sent to Deer Ridge Correctional Institution and am struggling to get by amid inmates interested, it seems, in judging and marginalizing each other. And if they call themselves “Christians” it’s often based on anti-Catholicism and “sola Scriptura” one-upsmanship.

A Catholic friend of mine — who truly embodies humility, service to others, love for the magisterium and total surrender to the will of God —  has shared with me his copies of the Catholic Sentinel. Now, whenever someone sees me studying the Catholic Bible, or praying the rosary while waiting in line, and they confront me about my Catholic faith, I show them the Sentinel and say, “This is why I’m a Catholic.”

Every photograph, every headline, every ad, every special feature, every list of resources virtually shouts out in joyous celebration the countless blessings the holy church — Catholics worldwide and locally — bestows on a world so often brought to despair through war, hate, gross materialism and petty doctrinaire squabbling.

Your publication really is a place of mental and spiritual refuge — a special blessing for us in prison. Joy! Hope! Mercy! Love! Faith! Compassion! Acceptance! Forgiveness!

The Catholic Sentinel shares all that is good and true about our faith — and it does so with an apparent effortless, confident and informative approach to issues, news, problems and accomplishments.

Robert Kenneth