My name is Oscar Cruz from Brownsville, Texas. I had been involved in gangs, drugs and violence for years.
My criminal life style started fast and at a very young age. By the age of fifteen I was already in TYC (“The Texas Youth Commission). I was so bad that I was sentenced to nine month term in TYC and wound up serving three years. In and out of TYC and finally, at eighteen years old, I “graduated” into the Texas adult prison system. After years of violence, drug addiction and gang life, I finally lost my family and found myself in prison TDCJ (Texas Department of Criminal Justice) for the 3rd time.
"I wanted to change my life... but didn't think it was possible..."
I wanted to change my life, but like many men in my situation, I didn’t think it was possible. While in prison, I decided to give God a try. I had prayed to God to please guide me in the right direction upon my release. I know I couldn’t make it on my own. The Choose to Change Foundation was there for me when I got out. When I heard Orlando at the parole office, I immediately knew God had heard my prayers. Hearing his story was like hearing my own. I started attending the Choose to Change Mentoring Program and I looked into the church that they were affiliated with. I Feld the call to do something for God so I looked in the discipleship program that my church offered. God had heard my prayers.
Today, my family has been restored and I am the senior pastor at a small community church. I am a father to my children, a husband to my wife and a leader in my family. I am so grateful for what God has done in my life. And I would like to give a special thank-you to my Pastor, Roman Guiterrez, and The Door Christian Fellowship in McAllen, TX. And of course all the staff and volunteers at the Choose to Change Foundation for all their hard work. Please give to the Choose to Change Foundation today. They are doing amazing work at restoring families, fighting against fatherlessness, drug addiction and family violence.