O U R M I S S I O N
Lion’s Gate Ministries, Inc. is founded on Christian principles and exists to launch at-risk young adults and families toward healthy and successful independence by providing environmental, emotional, social, intellectual, physical and spiritual support services.
- Environmental support through services like housing assistance, vocational training, budgeting and life skills education to promote a sense of fulfillment, safety and security as well as becoming balanced, productive and impactful citizens.
- Emotional support through services like personal and group counseling, mentoring and education that bring understanding and healthy expression of feelings connected with the internal and external challenges of life.
- Social support through services like education and planned activities that encourage the establishment and growth of healthy relationships with family, friends, co-workers and neighbors, both local and abroad. Qualifying Students will have opportunities to serve alongside Lion’s Gate Ministries, Inc. partners within the United States as well as in nations such as Nicaragua, Liberia and Israel who assist needy youth and families. These cross-cultural experiences will promote a broader sense of community and empathy for others.
- Intellectual support through services like educational opportunities that encourage the exploration of past, present and future ideas that can be applied to personal decisions, group interaction and community betterment; as well as the desire to learn new concepts, improve skills and seek challenges in pursuit of lifelong learning.
- Physical support through personalized services which encourage participants to adopt life-long healthy habits and behaviors that will develop strong bodies and minds through self-discipline in diet, exercise and other areas of physical wellness.
- Spiritual support through Christian discipleship to establish personal value, purpose and meaning as well as a sense of responsibility for the world in which we live.
O U R N A M E
There are many great reasons we chose “Lion’s Gate” to represent our ministries. We’ve long considered the lion as the “king of beasts.” It represents strength, courage, leadership and nobility. And for years, we’ve read The Chronicles of Narnia (C.S. Lewis) to our children and have been drawn to Aslan – the good-but-not-safe lion representing Jesus in the books. In Jerusalem’s Old City, The Lions Gate is located in the east wall and is also known as St. Stephen’s Gate or the Sheep’s Gate. This is where the apostle Paul (Saul) witnessed the stoning of Stephen, recorded in Acts chapter 7. More significantly, The Lions Gate is part of the path Jesus walked on the way to His crucifixion and ultimate resurrection. Beyond that, Jesus is considered the Lion of Judah of Revelation 5. Choosing a name to represent the heart of what we hope to offer wasn’t easy. But our desire is that all those who join with us – Residents, Staff, Instructors, Volunteers, Mentors, etc. – will be impacted and infused with the qualities of Christ that allow each of us to face the challenges of life courageously and victoriously.
O U R R E A S O N S
Because God compels us:
“‘For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’ Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing? When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’” Matthew 25:35-40
“But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.” James 1:22
Because there is great need:
Every year, thousands of young adults are homeless, jobless and hopeless. They may be aging out of Foster Care and, at 18, dropped at the nearest homeless shelter or park to fend for themselves. Or, they’ve made unwise choices that have landed them in detention – which is often better than home, if they have one – and, when released, have the choice to return to an unsafe home environment or take to the streets for whatever “opportunities” they can find. Sometimes, it’s just a young person in the neighborhood who is simply struggling for any number of reasons. On the streets, these young people are desperate and easy prey to gangs, pimps and other traffickers, drug dealers and anyone else who might use them for personal gain.
Many of these young people could lead incredibly successful lives and contribute to stronger communities if only they were given the opportunity. We have witnessed what love and hope can do to transform a person who longs for it. We believe Lion’s Gate Ministries can – and will – be a place of transformation, healing and victory!
M E E T O U R B O A R D O F D I R E C T O R S:
Debra Cruver, President
With both the heart of a mother and teacher, Debra desires to launch young adults on a successful path of healing and purpose. Besides raising her own adult children, she is “MamaCruv” to many.
John Bruder, Secretary
John is a local attorney and a great man to have on your side. His heart is a good balance of justice and grace as he seeks to offer transformational hope to the marginalized.
Frank Mead, Treasurer
Frank is a technology expert and Senior Project Manager. He enjoys teaching life skills from how to use a computer and how to live on a budget, to how to play the guitar and enjoy life.
Nana is brilliant in both mind and smile. As a real estate developer, she is committed to revitalizing urban areas by developing quality and affordable housing and services. She is also the Founder of Chapters Youth and Community Development, Inc.
You may bump into George on the streets during one of his frequent healing prayer outreaches in local communities. He’s been a basketball coach, a middle school math teacher and is now a Managing Partner with Flipping NJ.
M E E T O U R S T A F F:
Rob Cruver, Director of Programs
Rob has a heart to offer healing and hope to anyone in need. He has been active in prison ministry for 30 years, and his many experiences include leadership in summer sports camps, music festivals, at-risk youth outreaches and numerous overseas mission trips.
Joy Paul, Assistant Director of Programs
Joy is actively leading our weekly young women’s outreach at Middlesex County Corrections, is overseeing our LGM internship program, spearheading our Social Media outreach and is our in-house professional photographer. She is an enthusiastic part of our missions planning.
Hannah Sibaja, Assistant Director of Programs
Hannah is also serving in our MCC outreach, leading the young men’s weekly program. She also helps us with Volunteer recruitment and The Feast (potluck+bible study) on scheduled Saturday nights. She often represents us at Conferences and is part of our missions outreach team.