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Updated: Feb 3, 2023

We’ve said for many years that when someone receives a life in prison sentence, the only people more lost as in what to do next, what to expect and how to move forward than the person being sentenced is their family. For most, this is a total shock to the system, unimaginable and totally confounding.

What happens now? Will I ever see my loved one again? Are they truly gone forever? What can I do, how can I help, surely this isn’t the end?

No, it isn’t the end, but the beginning. The beginning of a long, arduous, often painful and complex journey that your loved one, and you, are embarking on, not of your choice.

While not speaking to the guilt or innocence, culpability, criminality of anyone or any crime, the journey is the same in so many respects for everyone on both sides of the wire. And while you may feel alone, unable to share your questions, worries or your sorrow (after all, who would sympathize with the heartache of someone related to a criminal), the truth is, you aren’t alone, in fact, you’ve just joined a community of many thousands, all of whom have many of the same questions, concerns and rollercoaster emotions that you’re experiencing.

Welcome to the neighborhood. You’ll find friends, compatriots and support here, along with help, information and strength. How do you tap into this community?

Come to our seminars. The first one is February 11—coming up soon—here in Sacramento, at Capital Christian Center. And once again, as she has for the last, perhaps 10 years, Jennifer Shaffer, Executive Director of the Parole Board, will give up much of her Saturday speaking to those attending.

Of course, there are other ways to join our band of fellow travelers, but nothing tops the personal connection of being there in person. And not only will you make contacts, you’ll learn a whole lot about the parole process, what’s real and what’s rumor and ways you can actually help your prisoner do the work needed to come home.

It isn’t easy—it isn’t supposed to be easy. But it is possible, and we’ll have former lifers who’ve made it home there to be the living proof of what work, introspection and change can do. And you’ll get enough resource material and written information to keep you busy studying for days. And—we’ll provide lunch as well!

So come join the party! Sign up for the seminar on our website ( under the Events tab and bring your questions, angst and worries with you.

We’ll try to answer the first, calm the second and alleviate the third.

Hope to see you there! We minions stick together!

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