Rising above addiction - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

Rising above addiction

Set Apart Discipleship seeks to help more men

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Posted: Friday, September 6, 2013 12:00 am

COEUR d'ALENE - Since June 2012, John Padula and his wife, Amanda, have been taking into their Coeur d'Alene home many men battling drug addiction and trying to stay clean.

John Padula, 34, said, "God just gave me a disgust for my old life, but he gave me a heart that broke for people in addiction."

Padula, a former drug addict, runs the nonprofit home called Set Apart Discipleship, which currently houses 13 men.

Set Apart has ties with Pastor Tim Remington's Good Samaritan drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility in Coeur d'Alene.

Padula wants to help more men, and he's raising money to do remodeling in the basement of the home located at 1222 N. Sixth St. to provide three more bedrooms and a bathroom.

"We want to finish the downstairs, to expand in this home," Padula said. With that work done the home would be able to house six more men.

They already have the lumber and drywall, but now need the plumbing, electrical and paint, along with the labor.

From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sept. 14, in the parking lot of the home, Set Apart is hosting a fundraiser.

They will be selling donated items and serving meals at $5 per plate. There will also be a raffle. All the money will go to the basement remodel.

During the fundraiser, the men who live at the home will be sharing their stories with those who attend.

Aidan Gale, 18, a high school dropout who had been addicted to methamphetamine and heroin and was homeless and in and out of jail, is one resident.

"I was just killing myself fast, and living out of a Dumpster, wherever I could find to keep myself out of the snow," Gale said.

He said staying at Set Apart the past few months has helped him tremendously to stay clean and get on the right path.

"With John and Amanda, it's not just a halfway house," Gale said. "They make you part of their family. That's what I needed, I didn't need to feel like I was just in some other program."

John Padula, who was born and raised in Kellogg, was himself a methamphetamine addict for 17 years.

He went to prison for six years, got out in 2006, started with cocaine and alcohol and went right back to meth. He did more time behind bars.

He didn't get on his current track, with religion and helping others, until December 2008.

Eight of the men living at Set Apart are straight off the street or out of jail. They are waiting to get into Good Samaritan.

"None of these people who come here have ever really had a family, or a family setting that they've grown up in," Padula said.

The five other men have been through Good Samaritan's rehabilitation program.

The Padulas moved into the home in June 2012, starting with hosting men who had completed rehabilitation.

"We had four guys to start with," Padula said.

Set Apart began to evolve by taking in men who hadn't completed rehab. That started in January, when Remington's program had a three-month waiting list.

The men at Set Apart all pay monthly rent. The men who have completed rehab pay the most, at $225 per month. Donations pay the rest of the bills, which total $3,100 a month.

John Padula is the only employee, and he gets only $1,000 per month to support himself, his wife and their two young daughters.

He started doing meth when he was 13, and continued until he was 30.

His experience informs his approach to working and living with the men he welcomes to Set Apart.

"My teeth were all rotted out, broken off," he said.

About a year and a half after becoming a Christian he met some people who agreed to fix his teeth. So he knows what it feels like to be the recipient of help.

"They gave me a brand new smile, all for free, like the Lord has totally blessed me," he said.

Contact John Padula at Set Apart: (208) 704-1492.

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  • Mistyburton posted at 9:27 am on Sat, Sep 14, 2013.

    Mistyburton Posts: 2

    I live directly behind John and his family. Funny story, I have known John for approx. 20 yrs. I had no idea he lived so close or what was going on at his house. What I do know is that there are several men playing gospel music and basketball all times of the day! And the best part..... Is my 17 yr. old son likes to spend time shooting hoops and talking with guys over there. Do not underestimate the power of the LORD! He has chosen John and his family to do, what some of us would call " dirty work ". I for one am incredibly proud to see the miracles that have happened in his life!

  • DUSTER posted at 4:23 pm on Sat, Sep 7, 2013.

    DUSTER Posts: 1

    Well done CDA press.....i have been praying that i will see a picture of John and Amanda being presented a check for expenses, repairs, remodel,in the cda press and i firmly beleive that WILL happen ,the LORD is never short handed and has chosen you both for HIS glory.......love u both ...

  • Johnppadula posted at 9:35 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Johnppadula Posts: 12

    Thank you all for the encouragement! Jesus is the only way to being set free, period! Our hearts are to change our community for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and we couldn't do anything we are doing without all of the support from all of you!:)

  • Joseph Jr posted at 8:41 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512


    There is no correlation between drug/alcohol use, and child molestation. People that are sex offender's may also use drugs or alcohol.

    Most alcoholics/addict are busy looking for funds to purchase their next bottle or get their next fix. Few are violent, though most are desperate. If you can clean one up, you'll usually find a really amazing person.

    The number of prescription opiate addicts is astronomical. Those who cannot afford to purchase the prescription drugs at a pharmacy or on the street, turn to heroin. Just the way it is.

    There is not one addict or alcoholic, who set out to be an addict or alcoholic. Please dig deep into your heart. Most everyone has an uncle, aunt, grandmother, grandfather, sister, brother or friend, who is a addict or an alcoholic. Please find compassion. I had little until a very close relative became addicted after 3 surgeries in one year. When they could not get prescription opiates, they turned to heroin.

  • Joseph Jr posted at 8:30 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Joseph Jr Posts: 512

    These people are earthly hero's and God's angels.

    God bless all of you for helping those who society turns their back to.

    Glad the CDA Press covered this. A follow-up would be awesome.

  • arius1 posted at 7:07 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    arius1 Posts: 958

    Kudos John, Many in the community have no clue as to the dis-ease of addiction and alcoholism, that it can strike any one from any class and bring any one to lows hardly imaginable. Thank you for your service. I remain anonymous, as I too am a recovering addict/alcoholic, sober for 28+ years, active in the community, and my life is blessed with family and friends, and good fortune I couldn't have dreamed of at one time.

  • opinionatedB posted at 5:07 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    opinionatedB Posts: 76

    There is a incredible need for places for addicts to go after they get out of jail, they can't go back to where they were before jail. The environment they were in before incarceration is toxic, and sending them back there is not a option. They need a brand new environment and having a recovering addict being one in charge is the way to go. Take it from me, a addict can spot the signs of relapse in seconds, so these guys that go to Johns house have the best supervision. John and Amanda, job well done, I commend you both.

  • opinionatedB posted at 3:58 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    opinionatedB Posts: 76

    John, Im sorry for part of my comment, I was wrong. You werent the one who did a drive by when we were teenagers, thank goodness for others having better memory than me, they told me of my error. My memory is hazy from all the years, but God was watching over you, and Im glad you have turned your life into something meaningful. God Bless you.

  • Johnppadula posted at 1:46 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Johnppadula Posts: 12

    Dear Intrepid, thank you for your response:) once these men come into our home, they become family. My daughters are not exposed to smoking, alcohol, drugs, foul language, ungodly music, or anything else unsafe, because none of those things are allowed. Our facility is very structured and always supervised:) And above all, God protects our home and our family:) thank you for caring, that is rare! May The Lord bless you mightily

  • Intrepid posted at 12:57 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Intrepid Posts: 1057

    Hi John........ Great that you came on and responded here. I want you to know that I do appreciate what you offer, etc............... Please understand my worry about your daughters. Just be careful there. Hope you have a good day.

  • kellie posted at 12:19 pm on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    kellie Posts: 10

    John and Amanda Padula are meeting a need that our community desperately needs. It takes a recovered addict to help a addict recover.

    God Bless you and your family!

  • Johnppadula posted at 11:39 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Johnppadula Posts: 12

    Hello everyone who has commented. This is John Padula.Thank you all for your concerns. Please feel free to call me with any questions. 704-1492. And I'm not sure who opinionatedB is, but thank you so much! God is so faithful. If like to know who you are though lol:) God Bless you all

  • MarkTubbs posted at 11:15 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    MarkTubbs Posts: 1

    Thank God for people like John and Amanda who are willing to sacrifice their own comfort and the pursuit of profit to love the unlovable. May their tribe increase.

    There is no zoning necessary for human beings.

  • Scottys neighbor posted at 8:43 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Scottys neighbor Posts: 29

    "Pearls Before Swine" in today's paper. Sublime.

  • ancientemplar posted at 7:24 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    ancientemplar Posts: 1283

    Isn't there some sort of city zoning code limiting the number of non related persons from living in the same single family residence in the zoning district.?

  • Intrepid posted at 7:09 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    Intrepid Posts: 1057

    If I read this correctly we have a reformed addict of 17 years who is now 'reborn' and using his own home as a halfway house for current addicts trying to shake their drug use habits.......... and.......... there are 2 young daughters also living there? Is this correct? I mean it is nice and everything to want to help. But if these young girls are in that environment I'd be concerned about their safety.

    Can anyone clarify this????

  • voxpop posted at 5:58 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    voxpop Posts: 738

    I read stories like this and I wonder about two things immediately.
    - Do the neighbors know what lurks nearby? Guess they do now.
    - Does Cda have any sort of zoning/licensing for this sort of thing? Not likely but at some point one of these guys will do something newsworthy and the city council will be outraged by their professed lack of knowledge. And if you don't live in the vicinity of this place another could be right next door to you.

  • opinionatedB posted at 5:34 am on Fri, Sep 6, 2013.

    opinionatedB Posts: 76

    John, you know God was watching out for you, and preparing you for the plans he has for you. Just think, you could be doing life in prison for murder if the bullet you sent into a home as you drove by all those years ago had killed someone. God was watching over all of us then, and when I think back to being young and dumb, I just thank the Lord for my life today. Im Glad to hear that your living your life differently, God Bless you.

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