Taken from our August 2014 Newsletter
Greetings from our corner of the Lord’s field!
On June 9th, we suffered another riot in the prison at Santa Adelaida, outside the city of Matamoros. The fighting was between members of the Gulf Coast Cartel. Ten people were killed. Things were pretty tense for a few weeks due to the fact that Osiel Cárdenas’s son-in-law was one of those killed. Osiel Cárdenas is head of the cartel. Events that have transpired over the past several weeks due to this riot are unimaginable.
As I was leaving the prison a few days after the riot, I stopped by to see Saholin, a former Zeta who has grown into a great man of God during the past few years. For their own protection, three of the men who were involved in the murder had been placed in Saholin’s cell, which is actually the guards’ break room and is separated from the general prison population. Three hardened men who just a few days prior would not have wanted to talk to me were now huddled in fear with their families who had come to visit. The right hand of one of these men had been severed from his body; another had both arms in casts from the wrists to the shoulders due to multiple breaks; and the third had serious head bandages. When I spoke to them about the Lord, they were ready to listen. They and their families cried as I spoke to them of the love of God, gave them all Bibles and prayed with them. Although they have been moved to a different prison, they still seem to welcome my visits.
After the riot, the cartel boss inside the prison was removed from his position by the those in control outside the prison. He has since prayed and given his heart to the Lord! A few days ago, I delivered to him Bible studies covering both the Book of Psalms and the Book of St. John. He is now studying the Scriptures with us! The new head of the cartel in the prison has shown favor to us and given us permission to minister among the Zetas who are locked up in solitary. This is the first time that we have ever had permission to minister to these men. They are viewed by the Gulf Coast Cartel as enemy combatants. Twenty two Zetas are now doing weekly Bible Studies with over half of these men having given their lives to the Lord.
The Warden was made a scapegoat by the government and was transferred to another prison because of the riot. His wife happens to still work at the Santa Adelaida prison. She has given her life to the Lord and has asked to do the Bible Studies. She has been doing them now for about a month! Isn’t the Lord WONDERFUL?! Only God can take a situation as awful as a prison riot where ten men were killed and turn it around for His glory!