Home Features The positive role of religion in criminal justice

The positive role of religion in criminal justice

When it comes to helping those in need, some of the people who need the most help are those who have been incarcerated and their families.

“Those who lose a loved one to the justice system is like having them die in that it causes just as much grief,” said Rev. Dr. Denise Strothers of Healing Communities USA.

She continued by speaking about how families are affected by losing a loved one to the justice system and how people need to be there for those who are going through that struggle.

Strothers also stated that when it comes to those who are returning from incarceration, “We have a tendency to kill our wounded and not extend God’s grace to them.”

Imam Talib M. Shareef of Masjid Muhammad, the Nation’s Mosque, also taught five key benefits of religion to society.

— It gives us meaning and purpose.

— It is an agent of social control and behavior.

— It reinforces social stability.

— It improves physical and psychological behavior.

— It motivates people toward positive social interactions.

Shareef also taught that we shouldn’t act against order and peace.

“You can have your space and belief but you don’t need to go against the peace,” Shareef said. “There must be order for there to be peace.”

Elder Jeremy R. Jaggi, of The Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter-day Saints, taught of Alma and Amulek’s experience in prison in the Book of Mormon.

“It was by faith that the walls of the prison were rent and twain,” Elder Jaggi said.

He shared this scripture to show that those who have been incarcerated can escape the prison that is a criminal lifestyle.

To end, Strothers said that the number one thing that those who were incarcerated need is to be accepted by those around them. She also stated that we should celebrate their return like the father in the story of the prodigal son.

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