From their website, www.teenchallengestl.org:
“Freedom from Addiction starts here!”
“Adult & Teen Challenge of St. Louis offers a 30-day program and is also dedicated to a transformative 4-to 12-month residential program based on Christian principles to help restore broken lives of men and women overcome by addictions (such as drugs, alcohol, gambling, prostitution and pornography). Our program is holistic – we are concerned with the body, mind, and spirit of those who come to us for help. Adult & Teen Challenge’s mission is to help individuals become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, socially adjusted, physically well, and spiritually alive and return to society as productive citizens.
“Adult & Teen Challenge of St. Louis works extensively with young men and women, 18 – 35 and older. Most adults who arrive at our doors bring with them a tragic history of substance abuse or other life-controlling problems. At Adult & Teen Challenge of St. Louis, the journey to sobriety includes attention to the spiritual needs of those who seek our help.
“With a focus on the practical applications of Christian teachings, individuals not only learn how to change deeply entrenched, self-destructive behavior, but to discover a new identity in Christ that makes these changes possible. Through Bible-based classes, individual study, personal mentoring, work ethics training, and involvement in the Christian community, we facilitate the transition to conquer life-controlling problems.
“Thanks to the generous contributions from caring individuals, churches, organizations and the business community, we are able to provide our residential services for a minimal one-time fee.”
It began with the inner-city ministry described in the book, “The Cross and the Switchblade.”
Longtime friend Dr. Bill McConkey — nationally recognized fundraising consultant for ministries and Senior Pastor of Sutter Presbyterian Church in St. Louis – has been on the Teen Challenge Board of Directors in the early days and continues to help and guide the ministry today.
About C.R. Kersten Jr, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer … and his wife Paula
“… During his forty years with Adult & Teen Challenge of St. Louis, C.R. has seen thousands presented with the gospel of Jesus Christ and hundreds delivered from the bondage of sin…”
“Whom the Son sets free is free indeed” is a Bible verse that C.R. considers most relevant to his mission in serving the men of Adult & Teen Challenge as a certified instructor of the Adult & Teen Challenge curriculum.
“C.R. Kersten has dedicated the majority of his adult life to leading Adult & Teen Challenge of St. Louis. He joined the staff fresh out of college as a counselor on May 22, 1978, when the center was located at its original St. Louis location on Washington Avenue. In January 1982, C.R. was named Executive Director, making him responsible for the overall operations of Adult & Teen Challenge and the main liaison to the organization’s Board of Directors.
“ During C.R.’s tenure, Adult & Teen Challenge relocated from downtown St. Louis (1981) to its present 12-acre campus in High Ridge, Missouri. This modern facility can house 24 adult male students and up to 10 ‘re-entry’ students – those students assimilating back into the community from the Adult & Teen Challenge program. In 1984 a multi-purpose building was built which served as the office, staff housing, classroom and kitchen. The dormitory was built in 1999. Since both labor and funding were donated, no debt was incurred on this building that was estimated to have cost $350,000 to construct.
“Twelve years later in June 2011, a women’s center, Diane’s House, opened in South City on Pulaski Street.”
C.R. and his wife, Paula, serve in prison ministries at Missouri Eastern Correctional Center in Pacific, Missouri and the Kairos ministry at Potosi Correctional Center in Potosi, Missouri. They are active members in Faith Community Church in House Springs, Missouri, where C.R. taught a new converts class for over 25 years.
Recordings from the past, additional people, ministries committed to help young people and adults …
To hear … “Jeremy Smith leads ‘Faith Ascent’ (www.faithascentministries.com), helping young people to be grounded in Biblical Faith” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2019/01/29/jeremy-smith-leads-faith-ascent-www-faithascentministries-com-helping-youth-to-be-grounded-in-biblical-faith/
To hear … “Bright Lights Ministry equips young ladies to use years of their youth for Christ; Began 650+ groups (See http://www.brightlightsministry.org/) … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2016/06/10/bright-lights-ministry-equips-young-ladies-to-use-years-of-their-youth-for-christ-began-650-groups/;
To hear … “ Jason Gray, Rev. John Richardson: Jason’s concert to ‘Celebrate Recovery’ in one of 28,000 churches (See www.celebraterecovery.com and more about founder John Baker) … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2017/08/21/richardson-pastor-john-efree-musician-jason-gray/;
To hear … “Teen Jordan Whitmer ignites awesome student-led Jesus movement; see www.howtolifemovement.com” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2015/07/05/very-young-jordan-whitmer-ignites-awesome-student-led-jesus-movement-see-www-hashtaghowtolife-com/: (Jordan is several years older in 2020)
To hear … “TeenPact National President Stephen Blunk, graduate Sarah Greek: impact of www.teenPact.org; teens invited” … click on … “https://haroldhendrick.com/2012/02/03/teenpact-nat-president-stephen-blunkgrad-sarah-greek-impact-of-www-teenpact-org-teens-invited/;
To hear … “From dysfunctional family, never met his father, Greg Stier impacts 1,000,000 teens with good news” (see www.dare2share.org) … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2017/02/05/from-dysfunctional-family-never-met-his-father-greg-stier-impacts-1000000-teens-with-good-news/;
To hear … “Evangelist Ron Hutchcraft re spiritual stirring among Native youth; see www.oneagleswings.com” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2016/07/15/evangelist-ron-hutchcraft-re-spiritual-stirring-among-native-youth-see-www-oneagleswings-com/;
To hear … (Summary of HHH’s story as a 15-year-old teenager) “Drawn to faith in Jesus brought me joy, forgiveness, purpose, inner-peace, abundant & eternal life” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2015/01/06/drawn-to-faith-in-jesus-brought-me-joy-forgiveness-purpose-inner-peace-abundant-eternal-life/;
To hear … “Baker, John March 1, 2007 (words from the founder of ‘Celebrate Recovery’” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2007/05/06/baker-john-march-1-2007/;
To hear … “Teen Eagle leaders Lincoln Carper & Jordan Weller re ‘Collision Course Conference of World Views’” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2012/06/16/teen-eagle-leaders-lincoln-carper-jordan-weller-re-collision-course-conference-of-world-views/
To hear … “Young Jordan Whitmer began a youth movement in which he is now “too old!” It is led by youth under 19!” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2018/05/14/young-jordan-whitmer-began-a-youth-movement-in-which-he-is-now-too-old-it-is-led-by-youth-under-19/
Past links in thinking of Paula and C R Kersten’s prison ministry …
To hear … “Many murderers, rapists, and the like in prison have received Christ; some are called to serve there as pastors. Dr. Anthony Allen, President, Hannibal-LaGrange U tells of university’s ministry degree to prepare them.” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2019/10/08/many-murderers-rapists-and-the-like-in-prison-have-received-christ-some-are-called-to-serve-there-as-pastors-dr-anthony-allen-president-hannibal-lagrange-u-tells-of-universitys-m/ ;
To hear … “From the Archives: Dr. Henry Blackaby (“Experiencing God”); regarding his visits to joyful Angola Prisoners’ on death row!” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2019/06/20/from-the-archives-dr-henry-blackaby-experiencing-god-re-his-visits-to-joyful-angola-prisoners-on-death-row/;
Bonus recordings links from the recent pasts …
To hear … “A one-minute testimony from (now United States Senator) Josh Hawley. He opposes his opponent’s support of partial-birth abortion” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2018/10/09/a-one-minute-testimony-from-josh-hawley-opposing-his-opponent-support-of-partial-birth-abortion/
To hear … “Erin ‘Mrs. Josh’ Hawley regarding her warm and touching new book, ‘Living Beloved – Lessons from my Little Ones.’” … click on … https://haroldhendrick.com/2019/02/11/erin-mrs-josh-hawley-regarding-her-warm-and-touching-new-book-living-beloved-lessons-from-my-little-ones/