Columbus Baptist Church welcomes special speaker

Published 12:26 pm Friday, September 1, 2023

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Columbus Baptist Church extends an invitation to the community to experience a powerful testimony from a special speaker on Sunday, September 10, at 11 a.m. 

Rev. Jimmy MacPhee served 45 years in prison and is now an ordained minister of the gospel. Here are his own words concerning his transformation:

“With arms and legs shackled in heavy chains, I shuffled down the long row of cells called Death Row. Two stone-faced guards escorted me into a cell and slammed the door behind me. My stomach churned, and my heart bled tears. Some day in the future there would be an execution, and I was the one sentenced to die.  I was twenty years old.

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The day after I was imprisoned for killing a man during an armed robbery, a little Japanese man arrived at my Death Row cell door. His duties as librarian included delivering books to inmates, but he offered me something far more valuable than the stack of books in his hands.

‘My name is Frankie San,’ he said. ‘I love you, and Jesus loves you. He doesn’t care what crimes you committed. He will forgive you if you let Him.’ I listened politely, but cared nothing about my life, another’s life, or a God I couldn’t see. I was too blinded by hurt and rage.

I now understand it was God’s grace, after spending my twenty-first, twenty-second, and twenty-third birthday on Death Row, that the court re-sentenced me to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole. At the time, I wasn’t at all grateful for the grace I’d been shown.

I remained angry and assaultive, especially toward authority figures. I was so violent that at the age of forty, I was locked away in SuperMax—solitary confinement for the duration of my sentence. Just as I had that first day on Death Row, I took inventory of my life. I’d spent twenty years in prison and had nothing to show for it but pain and devastation. Hopeless, I wrote to Frankie San, my old friend from Death Row. ‘I’m tired of my life. I desperately want something different, but I don’t know what.’…”

Please visit Columbus Baptist Church on September 10 to hear the rest of the story and how God has used this man so greatly to help others who seemingly have no hope.  

If you know of a young person who would benefit from Rev. MacPhee’s testimony, please bring him or her. This service is open to all ages.  It is a story of hope, grace, mercy, forgiveness and victory.

Submitted by Tina Melton