Men who get connected and stay connected, stay out of that old lifestyle, and stay out jail. Their lives really do change.
It is a slow process, though, especially for those fighting addiction and recovering from abuse, but our commitment to a man is not based on their “success.” The “failure” rate for trying to make a clean start is high, so we demonstrate to men that we are not discouraged by their struggle, but will instead be there to help them get back on their feet. We don’t give-up on men. They will always be received with love, acceptance, and forgiveness. This is something men quickly learn, and it makes a difference. They are held accountable, but with mercy and grace.
Attendance at NBF Discipleship Groups is always on a freewill basis, and participation is open to men of any denomination or level of spiritual maturity. Though we are a Christian organization, a man does not have to be a Christian to participate. We are very much an ecumenical organization. Volunteers are from a number of different Christian churches, which reflects a core conviction of New Brothers, Inc.: to bring the Body of Christ together. This is a ministry to, by and for the Body—the whole Body of Christ. We are not trying to build a church, ministry, or organization. We are trying to build men.
Aftercare is much more than meetings. No matter the need, a willingness and readiness to help is very much a part of our work. We find that we are either their first call, their last call, or their only option. The various support services we offer are available to any man, regardless of his spiritual condition or participation in a group. If a man we haven’t heard from in years calls in need of help, we will always help in whatever way possible. If a man is going to learn to turn to Christ, instead of a substance or behavior, the Body of Christ has to be there for him during the good times and the bad times, helping meet both the mundane and acute needs of life.