Sing For The King Ministries Serves Prison Inmates

By: 
Judy Kramer
County Reporter
Sing For The King Ministries Serves  Prison Inmates
Christy and James Hoagland, and Johnny Allen are prison missionaries who spread the word of God under the name “Sing For The King.” They are dedicated to reaching those in and out of prison with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and beautiful songs. They have been offering services in prisons, shelters, churches and more all over Missouri since 2016, from their home base in Warsaw. They are scheduled for a performance at River Church on June 24, at 7:00. 
Johnny Allen is a walking testimony for prison ministry. During his incarceration at a maximum security prison, Allen surrendered his life to Jesus. A year after his release, in 2012, he began giving testimonials to prisoners. He is an usher at River Church, and is the resident manager for City Union Mission Camp that gives hundreds of inner-city children a summer camp experience. The Mission is an organization that has been providing warm beds, nutritious food and a place of safety for thousands of poverty-stricken and homeless men, women, and children since 1924.
“I was in prison, had an addiction to drugs, and was at a low point in my life,” said Allen. “I went to the prison chaplain to ask if I could go to a worship service, mainly because I just wanted to listen to the music. When the guest minister began talking about the word of God, I felt a spark of hope. I knew that day that I had changed. I started a journal, and wrote in my bible “prison ministry.”
Allen said that he first worked with another prison ministry team, but after a while the team went separate ways, and he thought maybe God was closing the door. However, he continued testifying in prisons on his own for another year.
He met Christy Hoagland at a Christian-centered “Celebrate Recovery” meeting where she worked with people who have hurts, habits and hang ups. A light went on when he realized that Christy made beautiful music and her husband was ministering at a church on a temporary basis. He thought the three of them would make a great prison ministry team.
“I asked Christy if she was interested and she said Yes! but James said No!”  Allen recalled. “Christy and I hounded James until he finally agreed to do one event, but only because he was supporting his wife. I sat in the back of the chapel while he conducted the worship service and saw a change in him as he spoke. After that service, he agreed to become part of the team that we named Sing For The King.”
Christy Hoagland is a singer, songwriter and worship leader, who started writing music in 2016. As she began leading these songs in prisons and at other venues she was overwhelmed at the impact they were making in the lives of offenders and others. She has a Certificate in Worship 
Ministry from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and in addition to leading worship in prisons, leads worship at conferences, church events, revivals and serves on the worship team at her church – Cornerstone Baptist Church in Sedalia. When Allen first heard her sing, he asked her why she didn’t record her music. After she left her job At Cornerstone Baptist Church as an Administrative Assistant, and devoted her time to prison ministry, she started recording songs. The sale of her CDs helps support the expenses of the ministry.
James Hoagland is a licensed, ordained minister who now has a passion for prison ministry.  He has studied at Liberty University and served in many pastoral roles with youth, children and families.  He preaches God’s Word in prisons and at revivals, churches, shelters and other services and events. He and his wife, Christy, have been married for 24 years.
“We have access to all 22 prisons in Missouri,” said Allen. “We do monthly and quarterly services, usually on Friday nights. We even have death row inmates attending our events. We wanted to get out into the community, and not just perform in churches. Our services in the community or in churches are the same as what we present in prison. Sing For The King website lists musicians of the group as Christy Hoagland, Vocals, Keys; Mark Miller, Acoustic Guitar and Vocals; Eric Kerwood, Bass Guitar, Djembe; Sean Moore, Electric Guitar, BGVs; Ryan Smith, Drums, Cajon; Chris Butler, Drums; Joel Harrison, Ukelele; Carrie Howieson, Keys; Christian Hoagland, BGVs; Cameron Hoagland, BGVs; and Jamie Groshart, BGVs.
For more information about the group and its ministry, Johnny Allen suggested reading the blogs on the website at https://singfortheking.com.
Sing for the King can be contacted at 17803 Drenon Road, Warsaw or by calling 636-748-0070.

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