Hope Beyond the Bars Prison Ministry

Bible Study Program

Hope Beyond the Bars offers a unique, mail correspondence Bible study program. With our program, inmates can form their own study groups within their pods or study on their own in their cells.

Study materials are provided along with email correspondence with the program director.

Art Program

 Hope Beyond the Bars art ministry is designed to introduce inmates to the glory of God through the gifts of their own artistic talents. Our program encourages inmates to use their time constructively to design unique pieces of art or poetry while requiring them to spend time in the Word to find scripture passages to pair with each piece designed.

Donations for artwork will provide commissary funds for the artists to purchase food and hygiene products.

For contributions of $5 or more, you may choose a Thank You gift from our art gallery based on the size of your donation.

Contact Staci in the church office at (434) 286-4736 to place your order today or for more information.

Click here to download full brochure

Current Newsletter

2022 Second Quarter Newsletter

The 2022 Foundation Grant Award allowed Hope Beyond the Bars to grow from twenty-one men in the second quarter of 2021 to thirty-three men and twelve women in the second quarter of 2022. We now are active in 9 prisons and 1 jail throughout Virginia as word of our ministry is shared among inmates.

Funds awarded through the Foundation Grant are specifically being used for Bible study materials, devotional materials, stamps, and supplies for correspondence with our volunteers.

Scottsville United Methodist Church has been a great source of financial support for our Bible study program and donations for participants’ birthday and Christmas gift donations to their commissary accounts. These small gifts mean so much to so many without someone to remember them on these special occasions.

Our biggest challenge right now is a need for more people who are willing to correspond with our siblings behind bars. We currently have five volunteers, three of whom directly correspond with the inmates. Even one email a week makes a tremendous impact and can bring much light into their darkness. 2 Corinthians says, “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts to give the light of knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” 

I am constantly inspired by the inmates’ openness and eagerness to receive any correspondence from us. Their gratitude in knowing that we care enough to send an email about God’s love for them opens the door for deep, meaningful

conversation that can lead to healing and hope. Reading emails about how they grew up, their families (or lack thereof), gangs, drugs, and prison life with its daily challenges as well as stories of transformation and rebirth gives me just as much strength and hope as I could ever offer them.

Most of the men and women in our program share the letters and devotional materials with others in their pod, thereby expanding our ministry farther than our financial means would allow us to do on our own. The inmates are a big part of our ministry and giving them the tools by which to be an extension of our ministry gives them purpose and fulfilment that only God can provide. What a blessing!

The past two years have helped us learn how important fellowship and friendship are to our mental and spiritual health. When you live behind bars, much of that can only come in the form of written letters and emails. So, we have come to understand the true weight and value of those words.

This type of personal correspondence has led one woman to change her home plan so she can move to the Charlottesville area to attend Scottsville United Methodist Church and become an active member of our community. She wants to live her faith and become a living example of the redemptive, transformative power of Christ’s love for all of God’s children.

Thank you for all that you have done to make this ministry the life changing program that it has become.

Donations can be mailed to:

Hope Beyond the Bars | PO Box 280 | Scottsville, VA 24590

Visit our website at Hopebeyondthebars.org

If you have any questions about our ministry, please contact

Staci Hainsworth at Hopebeyondthebars@gmail.com.

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