Kairos Prison Ministry International works to bring hope to incarcerated men and women as well as their spouses and relatives. Cypress Lake is glad to support both their in-prison and “outside” ministries. A local Kairos team of 28 men, including Ron Ritchie from our congregation, will go inside Desoto Correctional Institution in Arcadia, FL) October 14th – 17th to work with 24 inmates. There are a number of ways you can support the team:
“Pray for us that the message of the LORD may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you.” II Thessalonians 3:1 Ron has a prayer list for the entire weekend. He is looking for Brothers and Sisters who will commit to prayer in thirty-minute increments from Thursday afternoon through Sunday afternoon of the weekend.
Kairos provides meals from the “outside” for the participants in their programs. Food, drinks and support materials cost about $125.00 for each resident. You can purchase “meal tickets” and “take a prisoner to lunch.” The tickets are $5.00 each and are placed at the resident’s table setting for each meal. The impact on the residents has been incredible; the first time the meal tickets were used most of the residents had tears running down their faces. They could not believe that someone who did not know them would buy them a meal! Often God places these meal tickets where they will have the most impact. For instance, very often the name on the ticket will be the same as a loved one ( a father, mother, brother, sister or child) of the resident.
Some residents have not had correspondence from their children or other family members for long periods of time. A letter from an adult or child means a great deal to them. The Holy Spirit can use a simple drawing with the message, “Jesus Loves you and so do I” as a powerful tool to change lives. This has proven to be much more effective than letters with extensive Bible quotes. Placemats with children’s handprints or drawings from children with their age and first name have a huge impact. (PLEASE DO NOT INCLUDE LAST NAMES OR CHURCH NAME.)
“I was in prison and you came to visit me.” Jesus tells us in Matthew 25:36 that it is our responsibility to visit those who are in prison. During the Kairos weekend the residents receive a short course in Christianity. The program is inter-denominational and the residents learn that by accepting Christ they belong to the body of Christ, a new and very large family of brothers and sisters. One way to demonstrate this body of Christ is by inviting guests to attend the closing ceremony in the Chapel of the Correctional Facility. The residents are unaware that there will be guests representing the body of Christ attending their ceremony and when these guests are revealed the residents are often overwhelmed with the love of Christ and the Christian community. Having guests at the closing ceremony is critical to the entire weekend. We can talk all we want about the body of Christ but demonstrating the body for the residents to see is far more convincing. During the closing ceremony the residents have an opportunity to speak about what the weekend has meant to them, and hearing resident testimonies is a great blessing to those who attend. If you have not already done the background check form for the October 14-17 weekend, you can ask to be notified of the next Kairos weekend.
Have questions about the weekends inside prisons, or support programs for spouses and relatives? Contact Ron Ritchie at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.