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Prison Fellowship Selling Virginia Campus to Alliance Defending Freedom

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Prison Fellowship has agreed to sell its Lansdowne, Virginia, campus to Alliance Defending Freedom, the organization said Friday. 

The Christian nonprofit, which serves prisoners, former prisoners, and their families, did not disclose the purchase price for the 11.3-acre campus.

Prison Fellowship has been a partnering member of ADF, a non-profit legal organization aimed at protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life, for more than two years.

As part of the agreement, Prison Fellowship will continue to lease space in the building for two years.

James Ackerman, president and CEO of Prison Fellowship, said more than two-thirds of the organization’s staff was working from home even before the pandemic, making the large campus no longer necessary. 

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“For the last five years, Prison Fellowship has become an increasingly virtual organization with more people operating closer to our in-prison work,” Ackerman said. 

Prison Fellowship moved to the Lansdowne campus in January 2005 after outgrowing its space in Reston, Virginia. ADF is headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, and also has offices in Atlanta, Georgia; Ashburn, Virginia; and Washington, D.C.

“On behalf of the current board of directors for Prison Fellowship, we are thrilled that ADF will be moving into the building that was dedicated to the Lord’s work in 2005 and has served Prison Fellowship so well over these past several years,” said Paul Cauwels, current Prison Fellowship Board member.  “While it is bittersweet to see the transfer, it is a blessing that the partnership between Prison Fellowship and ADF can continue in this new way.”

ADF President and CEO Michael P. Farris said his organization is eager to carry on the legacy of   Prison Fellowship’s founder, the late Chuck Colson, who was “a strong advocate for freedom of conscience and religion.”

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Anne Stych

Anne Stych is a writer in Charlotte, North Carolina.