|High in the Himalayas, Jack Tillery (back to camera) reads a letter of encouragement written by a prison inmate to young volunteers. Tillery, a college and mission minister, enlisted Christian inmates from Louisiana’s maximum-security Angola prison -– some of them on death row -– to pray for the mission teams he leads to Nepal. |
ANGOLA, La. (BP)--Whenever Jack Tillery visits death row at Louisiana State Penitentiary, he heads for John’s solitary 6-by-9-foot cell.
Peering through the bars, he often finds John lying face down on the concrete floor, his head up under his bunk.
“Who you prayin’ for, John?” whispers Tillery, minister of college students and missions at First Baptist Church Moss Bluff in Lake Charles, La.
John’s face emerges from under the bunk with a broad grin.
|Brian (left) and Reginald, inmates at Louisiana State Penitentiary -– once “the bloodiest prison in America” -– are two of Angola’s most faithful intercessors for the unreached Sherpa people in Nepal. Brian even contributes financially to mission outreach to the Sherpa from sales of items he makes at the prison woodshop. |
“I’m prayin’ for the Sherpa, Jack,” he answers. “Prayin’ for the Sherpa!”
That would be the Sherpa people of Nepal, the Himalayan kingdom wedged between China and India. Sherpa guides have long been renowned for their connection to Mount Everest and the climbers they help reach its world-topping summit. But the Sherpa themselves remain mostly unreached by the Gospel of Christ. Perhaps as many as 50 -– out of more than 100,000 -– of the overwhelmingly Buddhist Sherpa follow Jesus as Lord.
John may be on death row at “Angola,” as Louisiana’s maximum-security penitentiary is known. But he fervently wants to share eternal life with the Sherpa. He knows he’ll never lay eyes on them in this world. He’s looking forward to joining Sherpa worshipers one bright day at a summit that soars far higher than Everest: heaven. Read More