Why Corrections Staff Fellowship?
We as corrections professionals play a vital role in the criminal justice system. We help protect our communities through the supervision of probationers and parolees, and in the incarceration of offenders. We face an awesome task in corrections; one that requires a tremendous amount of skill, endurance and wisdom. Our profession demands integrity.
As a former Associate Pastor of a Christian Church, and in more than forty years in the criminal justice profession as a deputy sheriff, probation officer and parole agent, it has been Mike Raneses’ experience that our vital mission of community protection in Corrections can best be accomplished by staff who are well-grounded in their faith and values, and who can integrate their faith and values in their chosen career.
It is this experience that has brought about the vision for Corrections Staff Fellowship.
Through CSF, staff are encouraged to do more than take their faith to work – they are encouraged to put their faith to work. In the Bible we read, “… it isn’t enough just to have faith. You must also do good to prove that you have it. Faith that doesn’t show itself by good works is no faith at all– it is dead and useless.” (James 2:17). Staff are asked to consider “What would Jesus do” if He had their job assignment? How would Jesus walk the tier at San Quentin State Prison, relate to his probationer, or conduct a parole search? To be effective, our faith must make a practical difference in the way we do business as corrections professionals.
In 1995, Parole Agents David Haproff, Ron Goodbrand and Mike Raneses began a Breakfast Fellowship for staff of the California Department of Corrections, Parole and Community Services Division in the Orange County area. They met before work two mornings a month for almost two years at the International House of Pancakes, not far from the Santa Ana Parole Office. Their attendance varied – from two to twelve staff. But whatever the numbers, they felt the Lord’s presence and encouragement. As the writer of Ecclesiastes noted, “There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under heaven.” The season changed, and David, Ron and Mike were transferred to widely-separated offices.
In August, 1997, as Regional Coordinator of the Parolee-at-Large Apprehension Program, Mike was relocated to the Region IV Parole Headquarters in Diamond Bar. Along with staff members Veronica Reynoso and Reggie Edmond, he began seeking the Lord’s guidance for establishing a Breakfast Fellowship in the Diamond Bar area. Although there were several restaurants in the vicinity, they found none with an appropriate meeting area for Breakfast Fellowship. They brought their need for meeting space to their Regional Administration, and began meeting before work in their Headquarters lunch room the first Tuesday of each month from 7:00-8:00 AM. The Lord always makes a way for what He calls us to do!
Since that time, CSF has been encouraged not only by local staff and administrators, but by the leadership of the California Department of Corrections and other corrections agencies as well. With this support, and what we strongly believe to be God’s guidance, we have expanded our vision from a local Breakfast Fellowship, to a ministry to support corrections staff worldwide in probation, prisons, and parole. It is with this vision that Corrections Staff Fellowship was born and continues to grow.
Statement of Mission and Faith
Corrections Staff Fellowship, Inc. is a unique, faith-based association of corrections staff working in custody, probation, and parole. The mission of CSF is to encourage corrections staff to be men and women of integrity; to equip and encourage them to more effectively integrate their faith and values in their lives, families, and career; and to strive toward the highest standards of ethics and professionalism in corrections.
We believe in God, in whom our integrity is based. We believe that God loves us, and we can know Him personally through faith in His Son Jesus Christ. While solidly Christian in perspective, CSF respects the views of others, and welcomes the participation of all staff to work toward common goals in Corrections. For a more comprehensive view of what we believe as Christians, see Christian Essentials.
We believe the mission of Corrections Staff Fellowship can most effectively be accomplished by establishing local CSF Chapters throughout the corrections community worldwide in probation, prisons and parole.
As a means of communication and encouragement within the corrections community, CSF has established Daily Power a weekday e-mail of information, encouragement and humor. For additional information, click on the link.
Means of Support
Corrections Staff Fellowship is a staff-supported ministry. We are thankful for the prayers and financial support of those who make this ministry possible.