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For Immediate Release

October 7, 2009

Contact: Jeff Lyons
Public Information Officer
Phone: 603-271-5602

Women's Prison Celebrates Ordination of its Chaplain

(Goffstown, NH) Since 2006, Beth Richeson has provided chaplaincy and other support to the inmates at the New Hampshire State Prison for Women. In August she became an ordained Presbyterian Minister and the women’s prison became her mission. On Tuesday, October 6, 2009, nearly one hundred inmates joined Chaplain Richeson for a celebration of her ordination.

The ceremony included music performed by the inmate choir, inmate testimonials, and reflections from other religious leaders. New Hampshire Department of Corrections Commissioner William L. Wrenn congratulated “Chaplain Beth” and said he was honored to have her in the Department’s midst and to recognize her accomplishment.

Commissioner Wrenn said, “She meets the inmates on the playing field without pre-conceived notions and has a boundless capacity for compassion.”

The inmates collected scraps of fabric together and sewed those into a vesting that was presented to the Chaplain.

The position is funded by the New Hampshire Council of Churches and not the Department of Corrections. The Chaplain is a non-denominational position that works with all faiths to facilitate and provide spiritual support to the inmate population.

Chaplain Beth Richeson
Above (left-to-right) NH State Prison for Women Warden Joanne Fortier, NH State Prison for Women Chaplain Beth Richeson, NH State Prison for Men Chaplain James Daly, and Commissioner William L. Wrenn.
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