Cain's Redemption: A Story of Hope and Transformation in America's Bloodiest Prison
Formerly known as America's bloodiest prison, the 18,000 acres that comprise Louisiana's Angola State Penitentiary are now home to 5,000 inmates, a full range of seasonal crops, a 9-hole golf course, yearly rodeos, a Bible seminary, a museum, and much more. All of this came into being at the behest of Warden Burl Cain, who is now the longest-standing warden in the history of Angola prison. Under his leadership, the inmate population of 5,000 has gone from regular knife fights to Bible studies. Cain is a strong believer in the ability of the gospel to turn the most incorrigible of sinners into productive, moral citizens. Because eight out of ten prisoners are serving life sentences without parole at Angola, Cain has taken upon himself the task of making the lives of these prisoners productive and educational. Through a partnership with New Orleans Baptist Seminary, prisoners have the opportunity to get a bible degree and even be transferred to other prisons as a missionary. The Angola phenomenon has been covered by such media outlets as: Time Magazine, Christianity Today, and in award-winning film documentary The Farm: Angola, USA. Author Dennis Shere combines his background in journalism and law to bring readers this account of redemption and life change in the most unlikely of places: a maximum security prison.
The Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola was such a violent and degrading hellhole that it was taken over by a federal court in the 1970s. Over the last ten years, the maximum-security penal complex has entered into the news again because of its controversial warden, Burl Cain, a no-nonsense disciplinarian and man of strong evangelical faith. Cain sends death-row inmates off for their lethal injections only after telling them that Jesus desires their repentance. He has transformed the sprawling facility from a warehouse of "the worst of the worst" into "a place where men sentenced to life could make lives and homes for themselves." Shere, an attorney who works on the behalf of death penalty defendants, recounts inspirational stories of prisoners who become rehabilitated by accepting faith and taking responsibility for their own actions. Shere clearly admires the prison's climate, conducive to religious expression and conservative Christianity in particular, and accepts the premise that rehabilitation requires individual moral conversion. This sympathetic portrayal of Cain's tenure stands in sharp contrast to Daniel Bergner's more critical God of the Rodeo (1998).-Steve Young, McHenry Cty. Coll., Crystal Lake, IL Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Author: Shere, Dennis.
- Publisher: Northfield Publishing
- Pages: 208
- Publication Date: 2005-08-01T00:00:01Z
- Edition: New
- Binding: Paperback
- MSRP: 10.55
- ISBN13: 9781881273240
- ISBN: 1881273245
- Other ISBN: 9781575675015
- Other ISBN Binding: printisbn
- Language: en_US
- Quality Rating: 1
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