From the Office of State Senator Dan Patrick

May 13, 2010
Contact: Logan Spence (512) 461-3448
Lara Wendler (512) 463-0115

Investigating the success of faith-based services

HOUSTON, TEXAS- Senator John Whitmire, chairman of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee, and committee member Senator Dan Patrick, are going to spend 3 days at Angola prison in Louisiana beginning this Sunday. Their trip will allow them to meet with Warden Burl Cain and observe the changes he has accomplished at what was once was the most violent prison in America.

"I appreciate Senator Patrick bringing the Angola prison ministry program to my attention and look forward to visiting the prison and speaking with the warden," said Senator Whitmire. "It appears while being tough on crime, Warden Cain is also being smart by allowing inmates to use their faith as part of their rehabilitation," stated Whitmire. "I applaud Senator Patrick's leadership and look forward to sharing the Louisiana faith-based rehabilitation initiatives with prison officials in Texas."

"I am very appreciative of Chairman Whitmire taking the time to review the successes at Angola with me," said Senator Patrick. "Even though we must put criminals behind bars and see they are punished appropriately for their crimes," said Patrick, "we must also do our best to try to rehabilitate them so that when they are released they no longer are a danger to society."

Last year, Senator Patrick helped begin a prison ministry in Texas through the showing of his documentary film, "The Heart of Texas." The movie, which documents the powerful effect of forgiveness on a Texas community is a compelling and life-changing message for incarcerated inmates. Angola Warden Burl Cain saw the film and invited Senator Patrick to visit his prison and the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary located at the prison.