Read the following testimonials from offenders who have participated in a Kairos weekend. As Kairos team members we are blessed to be "front row center" to miracles as they occur.
“When I arrived at [this prison] in September of 2009, I was alone, uncertain, and in need of something positive. I had heard all the horror stories that would rival a Stephen King novel of what life behind bars was going to be like. So here I am, in the middle of nowhere, with no family or loved ones in the state (all my family resides in WV) and with very little hope. I was truly alone.
But then, some guys on the camp told me about Kairos and the group of men who come here every week to spend time with us, people society are taught to hate. “Why,” I wondered. “If they knew what I did, they would run for the hills!”
But the guys kept telling me to check it out. So, I began going to [Kairos] Prayer and Share. Guys I never met before were welcoming me – truly happy to see me. However, it wasn’t just me. Every resident that came into the room was greeted with a friendly word, a handshake or a hug. I felt joy for the first time in a long time. That night, when I got back to my room, I cried. I wrote my family and told them about what I found at [prison].
That November, I attended the four day retreat and had one of the best experiences of my life. Previously, on May 14, 2008, I gave my life to Christ and had been attending study groups. But, with the help of Kairos, and the love for fellow mankind, regardless of their race or crime, I found real peace and joy in an additional tool in God’s toolbox. My family is glad for the positive changes in my life, my attitude, and my walk with Christ. Because of distance and health issues, my family is unable to visit. Yet, every Monday night, I get a visit from my Kairos family.
M and J are/were Aryan Nation members and “White Pride” was inked backward across M's chest so he would read it whenever he saw himself in a mirror. In another prison M was twice attacked and stabbed nine times by the Bloods. He almost died on four occasions. On day three, May 17, he prayed to accept Christ. He later prayed words of affirmation and blessing over H, the black brother sitting to his left. M, a new creation in Christ, faced his childhood friend and Aryan Nation cellmate and M stood strong for his new faith...
MW has been in prison for 33 years. He was one of three convicted of murder 33 years ago. One of the three committed suicide while in prison, the third individual died in prison. But soon MW will be released as DNA testing proved he and the other two were not guilty of the crime. MW said during open mic that he had run from God for 33 years and he was tired of running.
A wonderful weekend of God's grace, mercy, love, and kindness. The relationship between AMCI and Kairos NC continues to grow, and the institution has expressed their thanksgiving for our involvement, and for the way our team treats the staff. The breaks during second and third day were filled with the voices of men talking, sharing, and fellowshipping, and it was a wonderful sound to hear.
Many said that they had tried everything else, but as a result of the weekend, they were going to give this a try. Praise God. We also witnessed encouragement, power, and joy given to those participants who are already adopted sons of God. To see their hands raised in worship is a blessing.
You know, there are men across this country in Prison, who wonder if anyone cares for them. And our Lord says "I do", and he created Kairos, and he sends men through whom He will show them his great love, and that there are many, many people who care.
I would like to say how grateful we are for all of the volunteers, those who participated on the inside, and those who prayed, supported, gave, and loved from the outside We thank the Chaplain at AMCI. And last, we thank the families of the men on the team, and their sacrificial obedience, and their support. The bible says that God made peace between himself and man through the cross. Amen. Peace be with you.