Former Prison Inmate Now Reaches Cons for Christ Around the Globe

by | Sep 30, 2003 | Charisma Archive

Once a drug addict and a thief, Canadian minister Monty Lewis uses his testimony to draw people to Christ
An ex-drug addict who used to beat other addicts senseless, steal wallets and forge doctors’ signatures to maintain his habit now advises the Canadian government on chaplaincy issues within the prison system and recently received the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal for turning his life around.


A salvation experience while lying naked, about to commit suicide, in the isolation hole of a maximum-security institution left Monty Lewis changed forever. He was delivered of his chemical addictions; anger, fear and other emotional problems eventually disappeared too.


“In my entire life, I had never felt loved until that moment, that instant when I told God I wasn’t worth saving but asked Him to let me die with dignity. An explosion of God’s love filled that prison hole and a peace I’d never known let me sleep like a baby for the first time in years,” recalls Lewis, 58, of his 1977 conversion at Dorchester Penitentiary in New Brunswick.


The next morning he received a visit from a Salvation Army captain, who led him in the sinner’s prayer.


Lewis, who finished hosting his second Coalition of Prison Evangelists’ (COPE) conference for 250 international prison evangelists in September in Fredericton, New Brunswick, believes God protected him through almost 20 years of brawling, stealing, forgery, drugs, alcohol and womanizing. At one point, he had dozens of charges pending, from assault causing bodily harm to robbery with violence, stretching from his home province of Nova Scotia on Canada’s east coast to British Columbia on the nation’s west coast.


“I always had a sixth sense–a voice inside would say, ‘Don’t go down that alley’–I know now it was the Holy Spirit. I remember once being in a car with a hooker; we were driving to a pig farm in Penticton, British Columbia, and that same voice told me clearly to get out of the car. I found out later it was the famous pig farm where 50 prostitutes were killed, dismembered and buried,” he said.


The sordid quality of Lewis’ early adult years was preceded by an equally disturbing childhood as Lewis’ alcoholic father frequently beat his mother and told Lewis he would never amount to anything. As a child, Lewis was sexually abused by some teenage boys, an experience he said made him feel “dirty, stinky and never as good as anyone else.”


After accepting Christ and going clean, Lewis got a lucrative job, married Lynda, who he met at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, and had three children. In 1986 he started Cons for Christ, a Canadian ministry whose workers visit inmates in jail and send them Bibles, and follow up by discipling them when they’re on the outside.


Cons for Christ has since spread internationally to Haiti, Estonia, the Ivory Coast, Britain and France. Cons for Christ sponsored its first COPE conference in British Columbia in 2001. The conference was co-sponsored and funded by Kenneth Copeland Ministries.


Lewis is now chaplain’s adviser to the department of public safety in New Brunswick and wrote a training manual used throughout the Canadian prison system called Can the Chaplain Do It Alone? As an ordained minister with the Apostolic Church of Pentecost of Canada, he frequently shares his testimony at schools, churches and prisons.


Although the severe limp in his left leg from a terrible fight and the “train tracks” running down his left arm from years of shooting heroin belie Lewis’ past, he now seems every inch a respectable, hard-working person; a man with a mission.


“God has shown me my destiny,” Lewis told Charisma, “and it’s to reach the hearts of those who are imprisoned not just by bars, but by their own sin, shame, hatred and unforgiveness.”
Josie Newman in Toronto

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Spirit-Filled Pastor: Can I Ask God for Confirmation?

Spirit-Filled Pastor: Can I Ask God for Confirmation?

There are many incidents of God giving people a sign throughout the Bible. Although I believe God still does this, I also believe that we must be careful. Asking for a sign can be misleading if other factors are not taken into consideration. In Genesis, we find an...

Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: Are You Ready To Meet Jesus?

Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: Are You Ready To Meet Jesus?

The last words Jesus spoke to me in my 23 Minutes In Hell vision were, “Tell them I am coming very, very soon.” Then He repeated Himself and said again, “Tell them I am coming very, very soon.” The Bible is clear that Jesus is coming back to rapture His believers,...

The Best Way to Love Others and Yourself

The Best Way to Love Others and Yourself

I believe that other than the gospel regarding salvation through faith in Christ, learning to walk in love is the most important lesson in God’s Word. Jesus says that love is the most important commandment (Mark 12:28–31). The apostle Paul writes that love is the...

Prophecy: The Breach in Our Nation Will Be Repaired

Prophecy: The Breach in Our Nation Will Be Repaired

Praise be to Almighty God, righteous judge, holy of holies, the King of kings and the Lord of lords. The earth is His footstool, and to His kingdom there is no end! Breached Births The Spirit of the Lord says this day: “There has been a breach—breached births, My...

10 Reasons the Apostolic Movement Is Essential to Gospel Expansion

10 Reasons the Apostolic Movement Is Essential to Gospel Expansion

The global apostolic movement is the most significant expression of Christianity today. This is the view expressed by historian Philip Jenkins. He talks about the rapid expansion of the church in the global south, much of which is reminiscent of the first-century...

Experience a Better Kind of Love in Your Relationships

Experience a Better Kind of Love in Your Relationships

Do you have any relationship struggles? Perhaps you want to learn how to love, for real. Too often today, people search for a fairytale love and are disappointed when the fairytale fizzles, which it will. Michael Gibson, author of Real Life Love, challenges folks to...

The Power of Godly Words Over Another Life—and Yours

The Power of Godly Words Over Another Life—and Yours

Have the words that others have spoken over you ever significantly impacted you? Words can birth destinies on the inside of us and bring hope to our hearts for the future. They have the power to ignite our dreams and give life to our souls. At the same time, negative...

RECENT ARTICLES

How You Can Foil the Plot Against Your Life

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” Jesus warned us that we have an enemy, and he is a thief. He steals our joy, purpose,...
Activating Introverts in Evangelism

Activating Introverts in Evangelism

 Many believers mistakenly think that evangelism is only for charismatic, extroverted personality types. If they aren’t called to be evangelists, they shrink back from sharing the gospel with the lost entirely. The scriptural reality is that fivefold ministers, and...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]