Donated socks for prisoners do more than keep feet warm

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Deacon James Booth, the director of prison ministry for the Diocese of Nashville, is once again asking parishioners at the churches in the diocese to help make the lives of state inmates a touch better with the simple gift of socks.

Deacon Booth is conducting the seventh annual Christmas White Socks for Prisoners Drive. He is asking parishioners to donate new white crew socks, men’s size 9-10, that will become Christmas gifts for all the prisoners at the Riverbend Maximum Security Prison in Nashville.

He is hoping to collect roughly 850 pairs of socks to distribute.

If people drop the socks off at their parish, Deacon Booth will be happy to arrange the pick-up of the socks. The deadline for the donations is Wednesday, Nov. 8.

In the past, Deacon Booth has said the gift of socks is greatly appreciated by the prisoners. 

Inmates at Riverbend need good socks to cushion their feet and keep them warm while working their prison jobs, Deacon Booth explained. The donated socks are appreciated by the prisoners because they are typically better quality than the state issued socks, he added. 

But the value of the Christmas gift of socks goes beyond keeping feet warm, Deacon Booth said. “Like all gift giving, it’s an expression of friendship,” he said. The value of the gift “usually goes beyond practicality. It’s more about the recognition of the other person.” 

For more information or to arrange the pickup of donated socks, email Deacon Booth at 

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