Thank you for your continued prayerful support, as well as your ongoing feedback to our Committee of Management regarding potential ministry partners.
We have been in negotiation with a number of different entities, but it was soon clear, for a number of reasons, BUQ-Carinity was our preferred option.
Why the Baptist Union of Queensland?
While we have strong historical foundations with the BUQ, this is not a simple case of going back to our roots.
Since 1949, Queensland Baptists has operated a community services outreach as Queensland Baptist Care, now known as Carinity. Its chaplains assist more than 12,000 people in hospitals, aged-care facilities and other institutions each year and they are eager to expand chaplaincy into prisons. Carinity created a Certificate IV in chaplaincy through QB’s “The Training Collaborative” and this course will be available to our chaplains, providing enhanced formal skills and training to help them in their ministry. They also have well-established governance, compliance, risk-management and other corporate services which will support the continued operations of our mission.
Will Our Identity as Inside Out Prison Chaplaincy Continue?
The answer is a very strong and affirmative ‘yes…’ .
Both organisations consider it to be of great future benefit to maintain our identity as Inside Out Prison Chaplaincy.
Coupled with this, if you are one of our partners – people who pray and give – please continue to uphold and to sew into this ministry as the structure transitions.
While the transition to Carinity will assist greatly with things such as insurance, training, administration costs etc, we will still need your individual support if we are to maintain our core ministry of pastoral care and taking the Good News of Jesus to those affected by crime.
What does this mean for our chaplains?
While the BUQ is a denomination, there is no change to our Statement of Faith and we will continue to operate with a Kingdom of God focus, remaining open to any individual, regardless of denomination, who has a strong commitment to the Gospel.
Prisoners will still receive the same compassion and care from our Inside Out Prison Chaplains. Nothing at all will change as far as they are concerned.
This simply means all the ‘back end’ day to day operations of our ministry will be taken care of by a team who are well equipped to ensure even better training and support for our Chaplains than they are receiving now.
What does this mean for our employees?
These roles would come under the employment of Carinity with the existing position descriptions transferring over. Carinity would have the right to determine which employees they retain, and what those roles will look like, determined by existing skillsets inside of Carinity.
What does this mean for the State Chaplaincy Board?
The SCB would be able to enter into the three or five-year contract with certainty regarding the status of its member entities. It would also allow IOPC to continue to be a leader among our chaplaincy peers in developing prison chaplaincy policy here in Queensland, as well as having the necessary personnel in the organisation to oversee the complexities of negotiations and compliance of contracts.
So what does this all really mean?
To sum it up simply; the face of Inside Out Prison Chaplaincy will remain unchanged. Your donations to IOPC will still support the vital role of our Chaplains. What will change is the level of training, administration support, insurance and governance we have access to… in a very positive way.
These decisions have been arrived at after a long and prayerful process, which you have partnered with us in. We want to thank you for your prayers and ask that you continue to pray with us as our members consider this opportunity at a Special General Meeting on June 18.
This new relationship will facilitate both the continuity and growth of IOPC into the future, something that we are passionate about.
Thank you for your support and we look forward to that continuing.