FROM PRISON TO PULPIT
Pr Danaraj Samuel
Ex-drug addict & ex-prisoner, now a pastor of St. Mary’s Cathedral
Being the 3rd generation Christian and growing up in the church was no shield to the snare of substance abuse. I started dabbling with marijuana during school days and later ventured into heroin with a group of my college friends.
In the 25 years that followed, substance abuse became normalcy in my life and I was in and out of prison. I was in bondage, wasn’t a free man. I lost everything – my family, church, friends, a good job in one of the best hotels in town, all my self-esteem, literally everything! In between prison was Petros, Malaysian Care’s halfway home. I was also sent to Green Pasture (a Christian rehab centre).
Still during that time, I never doubted the existence of God. One day on the street, I called out to God, “God, don’t tell me that all these years of me believing in You was a lie. You saved the thief on the cross, why can’t you save me?”
The real change in my life came when I discovered the Gospel. It was during a Bible Study class while I was working as a security guard in St. Mary’s, my home church. I found the true essence of my faith that Jesus came, died on the cross for my sins and my sins were many. If God could forgive me a terrible sinner deemed as nonredeemable by all who knew me, what more could I ask for? I rediscovered my identity in God, made possible only through the redeeming work of Jesus Christ. I was willing to give my whole life to Him.
I went on to study theology and have been a pastor for 5 years now. Moving from the prison to the pulpit was not easy at all. I had to fight stigma and constant sarcasm. It was my love for God who loves me such a terrible sinner that kept me going. I am thankful for Rev Dr Andrew Chia who discipled and mentored me. He saw something in me that I couldn’t see myself.Are you in bondage? Come to Jesus. There is no other way.
- Seeing Posibilities
- Born 3 Times!
- God's Agent of Change then & now
- Happy wedding, why is everyone crying?!
- Called to serve the VVIP
- A Life Together
- God Took Care of My Needs
- 'I Care' — through the eyes of donors
- He Turned Himself In
- From Testing to Trusting
- Adidas & I in FAITH Garden
- Mental Disorder is NOT a Death Sentence
- A Volunteer Staff who Found His Life Purpose
- I Too Can Work!
- Early Intervention Centre in KK
- Shut up, sit down and listen!
- Out of UK, God Calls...
- From a parent of a Young Man with Autism
- I'm lucky I had cancer!
- Follow the rhythm of my heart
- Where does my strength come from?
- I'm weak enough to serve
- From Prison to Pulpit
- Finding Grace
- Offering my first fruits
- 'They' are pure joy
- God heard me
- Following my Sifu
- What's so special about them
- Spare the rod, spoil the son
- Little Precious who spoke with her eyes & smiles