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 November 5th, 2009  
St. Lucie County Sheriff Mascara thanks more than 200 clergy members and volunteers for participation in faith-based jail programs
At the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office’s annual clergy appreciation luncheon Oct. 15, Sheriff Mascara thanked members of the clergy and volunteers for their work at the St. Lucie County jail.

The luncheon took place at Westside Baptist Church where Pastor Dale Ingersoll provided facilities for the event.

What started eight years ago in the jail chapel with a group of 20 clergy members has grown to more than 200 clergy members and volunteers participating in this year‘s event.

At the luncheon, Sheriff Mascara presented more than 40 awards to religious leaders and volunteers who assist the Sheriff’s Office’s Department of Detention with religious programs, individual counseling, and the Re-Entry Program that helps inmates make the transition to living useful lives following their confinement.

Special music was performed by KWA Ministries under the leadership of Pastor Willie Russ, (now a retired Sheriff’s Detention lieutenant) and Ashlee and Kyle Smith from Common Ground Vineyard Church. The Sheriff’s jail food service provider, Aramark, and jail inmates enrolled in the jail’s culinary arts program prepared the meal.    

“It is gratifying to see so many committed members of the clergy and volunteers sharing our vision to support a vigorous jail ministry,” Sheriff Mascara said. “The Sheriff’s Office benefits from the volunteer work of those individuals and churches that make a difference in the lives of those who are incarcerated. Without these people, we could not operate these programs as effectively or efficiently.”

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