CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — There are some places in Central Illinois that will make you do a double take.
A house at the corner of Neil and Bradley in Champaign is on that list. It’s a big house, with a huge sign that reads: Jesus House.
Inside of that house, people are fighting back after addiction. The house is run by Jesus House Restoration Ministry. Tyler Jordan moved in last October.
“I needed something different in life. I mean I was just in a spiral downhill, my whole life, just broken,” says Jordan.
Living in the house changed everything. The ministry helps people who are struggling get back on their feet., including making sure they get a job and get their court cases sorted out.
“It was extremely difficult because I’m so used to going prison. I’m used to taking the easy way out. This for me is the hard way out because I don’t know I’m just used to giving up on life,” says Jordan. Director Dustin Brown wasn’t going to give him that option. Brown, a recovered addict himself, opened this house in June 2017. A lot has happened since then.
“There were women that wanted to get into programs and there were no programs and so I started praying about that,” says Brown. In January, he opened that house for women. Johnna Krutsinger will soon graduate, and run that house.
“I was in active addiction, I was away from my kids, not having any contact with them, I was just a mess … It’s been amazing, my life has been totally on the way to restoration. I had a class X felony and now it’s a class 2, and I’ve got probation, my kids are speaking to me again. Things are going up fast,” she says.
About a month ago, the group was given a third house and that will be a men’s transitional home. Overall, the ministry is helping 15 people, with plans for more.
“Really it’s just been awesome watching lives just being restored so much in the last year,” says Brown.
While the first year was successful, it certainly wasn’t perfect.
“We’ve come across some rough patches because we’re bold in our faith. Once we pushed through that and people saw that we weren’t going anywhere and hey, this is for real, and they’re really doing something and people are really being helped .. it kind of shifted and since that shift we’ve had a lot of people kind of come alongside of us,” says Brown.
He’s hoping the community sees what they’ve done and what they can do more of in the future.
The ministry can always use help and donations. For more information, click here. You can also call Dustin Brown at 217-761-8863.