DuBOIS — Temple Baptist Church in DuBois is opening its doors to anyone in the community seeking a faith-based road to recovery.
The Reformers Unanimous (RU) Recovery Program is a 12-step process that focuses on using Jesus Christ and the support of those around you to “break the chains of addiction.”
Pastor Kevin Orndorff, one of the program’s directors, said it is just being introduced locally by TBC, but has been in existence for 25-30 years, beginning in Rockfield, Ill. The author of the material used in the program was a drug addict himself who wanted to share his secrets to success with others.
Addiction comes in many forms and can range over a wide variety of things, such as drug use, eating, cutting or pornography.
“It’s an outreach to the community and is open to anyone who wants to come,” he said. “We don’t have a strong enough will to break these addictions on our own. We try to help people feel comfortable and welcome everyone.”
Other recovery programs might help addicts in different ways, but a permanent change takes a changed heart, Orndorff said. RU focuses on the underlying causes that contribute to addiction and using biblical counseling and teaching to overcome those behaviors.
“Faith changes the heart, and once the heart is changed, priorities and perspectives are different,” he said. “A heart changed for God brings hope into your world and into the brokeness.”
Orndorff said many people involved in the program feel it has changed their outlook and helped them remember they aren’t alone.
“Long term change takes a changed heart — allowing Christ to come in and change your heart,” he said. “Everybody’s priceless in the eyes of God. Many of these individuals feel unworthy, and we try to put that value back into their lives.”
The program involves making it through five books, each of which has a challenge within it, Orndorff said. After making it through those challenges, there is an 82 percent chance of recovery, he said. The national relapse rate for addiction is almost 80 percent, according to program statistics.
“It doesn’t matter who you are — we’re all broken, and we all need Christ in our lives to make a difference,” he said. “Helping someone recover is from the inside out, and getting their heart where it needs to be.”
Justin Buchanan, fellow RU program director and former addict, has been in recovery for two years now, thanks, he says, to his relationship with God and the support he has received from the community.
Buchanan has been through the recovery process with his best friend, Matt Kosick, who has been clean for about 10 months. The two have been friends since they were children, and are now navigating through the path of recovery together.
“We both struggled with drugs for over a decade,” he said. “I had tried every way possible to get clean, but couldn’t until I put Jesus first and dug into the Bible.”
RU is about much more than just reading scriptures and attending meetings, Buchanan said. It has become a support system and something they wake up for each day.
Not only has RU made the two of them healthier and happier people, but it has made them much better friends as well, Buchanan said of his and Kosick’s partnership.
“We hold each other accountable and we push each other to get better,” he said. “It has been a great experience.”
Throughout his life, Buchanan tried other rehab programs in an attempt to become sober, but never succeeded for more than three days. He said he knows what its like to hit rock bottom, and he couldn’t get make it back to the top without help.
“What I like about this program is that it’s so much more than a program — it’s people learning the truth of God,” he said. “People show up just to support us.”
Buchanan has lost good friends to suicide and overdose, so recovery, he said, means something very special to him. He likes to think that he and Kosick helped save each other’s lives, along with the guidance of God.
Call Temple Baptist Church at 814-371-8822 for more information.