The Rev. Rebecca Barnes leads the congregation at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Scranton.

A Scranton minister is drawing attention to a new program at her church through a special fundraiser.

The Rev. Rebecca Barnes of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Wyoming Avenue, is holding a birthday fundraiser through Facebook for Cypress House Bakery, a new nonprofit that will serve as a prison re-entry program based on HomeBoy Bakery of Los Angeles. Cypress House aims to create a viable business run completely by people re-entering societies with the hope that it will “rival local commercial bakeries in daily production and sales volume,” Barnes noted in her Facebook post.

“Its short-term goal is to teach marketable skills via the development of a menu of gourmet sandwiches which will be freshly made using top-quality ingredients and homemade bread that is baked daily on the premises,” she added. “The sandwiches will then be hand-delivered to downtown businesses by Cypress House employees.”

The program will provide those re-entering society with job training under the direction of a social services worker with counseling skills. A licensed baker will award apprenticeships.

Through Cypress House, we hope to live more deeply into God’s call to seek and serve Christ in all persons and to respect the dignity of every human being,” Barnes explained.

Barnes hopes to raise $10,000, just a fraction of the $300,000 the church hopes to gather to get the bakery started.

“Every little bit is greatly appreciated and will help us reach our goal,” Barnes wrote.

Rebecca’s Birthday Fundraiser for Cypress House at St Lukes

For my birthday this year, I’m making a big request for donations to Cypress House at St. Lukes. I hope you’ll consider contributing as a way to celebrate with me. My goal is huge – $10,000 – because overall, we are seeking to raise another 300K to get Cypress House Bakery up and running.