Brief History of the Missing Link Ministry
Matthew 25:35-36 – “For I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.” (NKJV)
The Missing Link Ministry (MLM) was first established by Rev. Dr. Yvonne M. Cooper in June 2002, out of a desire to help the least, the limited and the lost. The Ministry is charged with helping those who can’t help themselves, primarily those persons who are incarcerated and previously incarcerated. It is currently headed by its Co-Directors, Rev. Cooper and Rev. Debra Manigault, along with the support of the MLM members.
The MLM has provided services these past 9 years to over 34 Prison Institutions around the country. Those services included, but were not limited to, furnishing Bibles and other reading material; attending Parole Hearings; Visits to jails/prisons during extenuating prisoner circumstances, to name a few. We provide these services around the country because the men and women of the District of Columbia, once convicted, are disbursed to prisons around the country in that there is no “prison” in DC (since the closing of Lorton).
The MLM provides extensive services to the men at the Halfway Houses and D.C. Jail. Throughout the year we provide to the Men’s Halfway House (Hope Village) clothing and other support services such as money for ID Cards, Metro Passes, etc. We also provide a Christmas Party just for the men at the Halfway House wherein we have food, fun and fellowship. The men come and we provide gifts containing gloves, hats, scarves and more. At the jail we provide month Church Service, Counseling and other services as needed.
Likewise, the MLM provides services to the Women’s Halfway House. These services however are more intense. We provide a Bi-Monthly Workshop, wherein clothing and hygiene items are also provided at each event. Additionally, we provide Special Programs for: Mother’s Day, Christmas and Watch-Night Services, etc.
One of the MLM’s major projects is the Hygiene Campaign wherein we provide hygiene items, throughout the year, to the men at the D.C. Jail. The jail does not provide those items so we collect continuously, from month to month, to ensure that the men are supplied with their basic needs. The MLM has also provided testimony (one numerous occasions) to the Council of the District of Columbia concerning the absence of these hygiene items, as well as other issues affecting this population.
The MLM also realizes the importance of Restorative Justice to those persons who have been wronged, and to that end, we have conducted Workshops with both men and women who are incarcerated, by sharing with the accusers/offenders, the damage/harm they inflicted on their victim(s), with an eye on the accuser/offender recognizing the importance of the damage of their offenses and having them to take responsibility. Additionally, where the opportunity presents itself, the MLM have brought the ex-offender and the victim together to bring about healing.
MLM meets @ 7pm every 3rd Thursday of each month.