Skip to main content

Witnesses from Prison - KAIROS Prison Ministry Changes Lives

November 15, 2017
Witnesses from Prison - KAIROS Prison Ministry Changes Lives

Roman Catholic Diocese of Tulsa

During the last weekend in October 2017, 42 prisoners from a medium/maximum security prison in Cushing, Oklahoma, participated in a four day KAIROS weekend, KAIROS #26 at Cimarron Correctional Facility. KAIROS is an interdenominational retreat, patterned after Cursillo or Walk to Emmaus, with 42 inmates attending each weekend. KAIROS is instrumental in bringing different cultures together in the name of God and is proven to be the most effective Christian evangelization tool, particularly with Black and Native Americans in the prison system. Through the KAIROS prison ministry, we are able to make contact with the community leaders. We help them experience the love and mercy of God, encourage a change of lifestyle, and draw them into community of Christian love.

Thanks in part to funding from Black and Indian Missions, the Diocese of Tulsa is able to not only hold the weekends, but add an ongoing after-KAIROS support structure in all the prisons that allow KAIROS weekends. This support consists of monthly “Reunions” on the First Sunday of each month and weekly “Journeys” on Tuesdays. These meetings help the prisoners stay true to their faith journey and provide ongoing encouragement, sorely needed in the prison setting.

We are only able to provide one photograph of the weekend experience because of prison restrictions, but we can provide a sampling of the powerful witnesses from the prisoners themselves who participated in the weekend. These reflections were communicated at the KAIROS #26 follow-up weekend:

"I thank God for giving me the strength to take that first step to forgive and for helping me to deal with my anger issues. I also want to thank him for showing me that I’m not alone. This means so much to me just knowing there are people out there praying for me. Thank you and thank God."

"Before the Kairos 4-day weekend I was at a point in my life where I wanted to give up. I felt abandoned and alone! The Kairos team came and showed me the love of Christ and assured me that I am not alone and let me know that I was valued. May God Bless the team and all the supporters."

"Kairos was hope. The love and compassion from strangers can not be put in words. And it taught me that God is real. That through God I can love the men around me."

"My experience this last week was a life changing for me, I finally let go of the problems I have been struggling with and I gave my life to Jesus and it’s been [the most] amazing feeling I have ever felt. Thank You & I love You"

"I felt the love that I feel I have been looking for a long time."


"I’m taking knowledge with me, and acceptance of others. I had a wonderful experience coming to Kairos, personally I didn’t think this would have any effect on me, nor help. Man I was wrong it only took two days for me to realize God’s love and forgiveness. So whatever your going through don’t forget your never alone God is always there with you. "

"What I took away from Kairos?
1. Full Belly.
2. A Renewed sense of Faith.
3. Peace of mind & Happiness.
4. Forgiveness of self & others.
5. Accepting others as they are.
6. Don’t judge others to quick.
7. Like all the weight off my shoulders were gone after accepting God again.
8. A new outlook on things.
9. How to handle situations better.
10. How to reconnect with God.
11. How to change.
I just feel better ever since I came to Kairos I’m glad I had the chance to come & learn everything I did & I wanna thank everyone out there who prayed for us. It’s a struggle to change but it’s happening thanks to Kairos & your support. Thank you for not just looking at us as criminals but as people, Thank you & God Bless all !!"

"With God’s love we can conquer all. I found just that. I have felt more love this week than in the last 3 years. I’m grateful for God’s love I’ve seen through everyone that showed me I’m not alone. Life is about servitude and not about me. Kairos is a life changing experience. Thank you"

"I was able to experience the true meaning of Christ. I allowed others to serve me. I was able to open my heart and rejuvenate my spirit, Feel God’s love again in my life. I heard His still small voice speak to me and tell me “I Love You Son”. I will let His light Shine through me that others may see my good works and glorify God. Thank you for your service. Your Brother In Christ"

"I realized that there is people out in the world that is thinking about us in a loving positive out reaching way with love and prayer. This is such a wonderful thing to experience Gods love for us through you! I Love You Thank You and God Bless"

"I asked for forgiveness of all my sins and on this day, so I am a new and clean person from all my past life ... thanks to a wonderful group of people I have ever had the priviledge of meeting and getting to know and them telling me I can be forgiven and spend eternity with our Father. So from this second forward I’m walking the path that our Father chose for me. I know I’m going to fall, but I’m going to pick myself up and dust myself off and don’t let the Devil keep me down like I use to let him before this day, it’s just like my brothers spoke ... about how we can make a choice to change our lives’ from what it use to be to something a hole lot more better and happier, it’s our decision to “No one else”. So I made the choice to quit living in stress and pity for myself, to live the way I was put on this earth to live and serve my Father."

"I am 22yrs old, doing a 15yr sentence. I’ve been in jail since I was 16yrs old. I come to this 4-day weekend I was a lost soul yearning for love and peace I don’t have to look no more thanks to my brothers in Christ. Lately my faith has been down, I recently just lost my dad, mom and grandmother. So I’ve been on a warpath and resentment towards god & anybody that followed Christ. I was born and raised Catholic Came from a good family just made poor choices in life. Thanks to this Kairos 4-day I can truly have felt gods hands working on me & my future. I just It would good for me to write you Brothers back you just don’t know what this has done for me. So I’ll close by saying thank you and god bless you"

"I Learned how to trust and Love again"