The effect Kairos has
on the lives of graduates,
in their own words
“And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.” (1 John 5:11)
The judge gave me a life sentence; Jesus gave me a life contract.
Giving back, reaching out to us souls is by far the only reason I am where I am today. Am I perfect? No, do I still make mistakes, yes. Today I understand the difference and know I am still loved. Only because God placed you beautiful ladies in my path. Thank you Jesus, and Women of Kairos...
I made a friend here this weekend, and His name is Jesus.
3-4-16 That's the day I dedicated my life to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. I am incarcerated at the Hughes Unit in Gatesville, Texas. I am serving a Life Sentence for Murder. I've been locked up 19 years. I must do another 21 more years before even being considered for parole. Yet I am already set- free. I've never felt so much freedom. A court room judge said I must do a mandatory 40 years. Jesus Christ has set me free. I was Blessed to have been chosen by God to attend Kairos #38 at the Hughes Unit from 3-3-16 to 3-6-16. It was a true God send. I am a changed man, and because of it so is my family. I know all thanks goes to God, and that the people from Kairos are merely God's Tools, but never have I been so appreciative of a tool. Thank you all Praise God for the people you all are because Christ our Savior.
The Kairos women bring a lot of cheer and hope to those of us who were lost for so long in our
addictions or crime. You have no idea how much of an influence a Kairos volunteer can do in a person's life! I have been clean and sober for 10 years now and I owe a lot of that to the words that I heard from the Kairos women who took the time to bless us with their presence & amazing stories!
Up until the day I went to Kairos, I was really lost; lost in sin, though, and the way I was! Every other word out was a cuss word, or of impure thoughts or actions. I cared nothing about anybody's feelings or my own. I attended Kairos. I opened my mind, I heard, I saw things in others I never saw before. I started to see people that cared about others! I took “God” into my heart and mind, and a big load was taken from me. I felt good inside. Happy to be alive for the first time in my life that I could remember!! I saw life could change for me if I tried!
I thought I was pretty tough. I didn’t cry when I was arrested. I didn’t cry when I was sentenced. I didn’t cry when I came to prison. But I found out that I’m not tougher than God. I’ve been crying all weekend.
Kairos changed my life...I was depressed, alone, ashamed of what I did, and God came to me through the men volunteers of Kairos and they helped lead me to the saving knowledge of Christ and the peace and joy that brings.
I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit. I felt like Paul felt. And from that day forward, God has just been blessing my life.
I would love to someday be able to volunteer and be able to give back the love that was given to me. Please, please pass on my love to all the ladies this weekend. That was a magical weekend for me, and I hope others feel the love of Christ. God bless each and every volunteer that sets foot there this weekend.
What I learned at Kairos is that God doesn’t hate me, He just hates my sins; the volunteers taught me that He is a forgiving God — no matter what.
Kairos gave me a reason to live. I believe that, had I not come to know God’s love, I probably would not be here today. How else could a person with two life sentences survive the horrors of prison life? All things are possible with God. Without Him, many of us don’t make it. It was because of Kairos that I got to know God, and ultimately, I was given the chance to live.
I lost contact with my family outside of here. I've been doing my time alone; now I have a community.
Real people doing real things. A group who didn’t judge me but allowed me to look at myself and see the roots of my problems.
LEARN MORE: Kairos Inside Program
I have given up so much anger this weekend. I know God is in control, and that my daughter WILL come home and she will be okay.
I’ve had kids who were in and out of prison since they were juveniles, and I thought it was all my fault. I hated myself and I thought God hated me for making them like they are. This weekend has freed me from every ounce of guilt.
I always assume people are going to judge me when they find out I had someone in prison; but it was humbling to find out these women not only liked me, but they loved me.
I thank God for sending His beautiful daughters to deliver the message to me about Him.
It's been hard for me to get close to women, It's been a long time since I could look people in the eye. This has been the most wonderful weekend I have ever spent in my life.
LEARN MORE: Kairos Outside Program
I went to Kairos and I thought I’d check it out for at least ’one day.’ Well, turned out the weekend went fast and led me to follow Jesus instead of running away from Him! Still going strong!
I can no longer deny the God that I’ve met.
I’m just a gambler who’s lost the last bet.
The things I praised were not of the Lord.
The things I did He would not have adored.
But now God, I only want to follow you
And do only the things you ask me to do.
This is the fourth time I have been locked up in a juvenile facility. Treatment in those other places didn’t seem to help me but what I have experienced here in the Torch and this facility really took…
WHAT ONE WORD WOULD YOU USE TO DESCRIBE THE WEEKEND?
Life-changing • Outstanding • Challenging • Holy • Inspirational • Exciting • Unique • Great • Amazing (3 youths) • Fun • Exhausting (in a good way) • Fantastic • Amusing • Tremendous ▪ Empowering • Inspiring (2 youths) • Touching • Blessed • Great • Awesomeness
Just wish that the weekend would not end... also did not know of all the people in the world that were praying for us this weekend. As I read them they brought tears to my eyes, made me cry. I felt that I was loved again.
LEARN MORE: Kairos Torch Program
Men gave their lives to Christ, others re-energized their faith, others gained a deeper understanding of Christ’s love. God changed men’s lives this weekend… participants and team members. The weekend was blessed beyond belief. We expected miracles and we witnessed our God in action.
All of last night I had dreams about the weekend. When I got up to make coffee, I was overwhelmed with the beautiful colors in our living room and dining room as if seeing them for the first time. I then realized that I had spent 3 ½ days sharing with people who mostly see grays and blues. Then I recalled the posters, the banners and the prayer chain in concert with our team’s efforts to wear bright colors and I realized even more how difficult life is for all of the residents at MCI-W. I felt joy and hurt when our little table family separated from us and showed signs of forming real bonds of love and trust with each other that did not include us. It was like letting go of a beloved daughter knowing that this was the right way for things to evolve. Our little “babe chicks” were growing up.
There is no greater joy than to hear the testimonies of these men when they are touched by the miracle of God's love and forgiveness — some on whom have had no visitors or mail for many years.
I was overwhelmed by the physical transformation in the women — young and old — short-term and death-row. For years now Kairos has given me the picture of what ministry is really all about rolled up into "a one-room, four-day experience" that is fueled by consistent community contact and nurturing.
What do I get out of it? My heart is filled with indescribable joy to connect with tough yet vulnerable brothers and see God transform hearts and lives before my very eyes. Amazing. I leave church for a weekend and experience heaven on earth in prison.
Some of you many have heard me say that is really through my servanthood in Kairos and work in the court system that I opened up and heard God's call into the ministry. I came away from that first experience so full of passion for the lost and forgotten I didn't know what to do.
LEARN MORE: Volunteering with Kairos Prison Ministry
Kairos exemplifies helping the lives of others. Choosing to serve God and others often places limits
on our present way of living. But it opens us up to a limitless future—an eternal future in God's
eternal dwelling place. Kairos volunteers steadily invest the time, and talents, and treasures that
God entrusts to us to help build up his Kingdom. It’s through these actions that Kairos volunteers
witness to being prudent, trustworthy children of the light!
— Chaplain Jim Daly, New Hampshire State Prison for Men
After a Kairos event takes place, it changes the whole prison. Attitudes are better and infractions decline. The prison becomes a safer place. By the end of each Kairos event, many of these formerly hardened men and women give testimonies at the closing ceremony about how they have experienced Jesus Christ and the love of God in a way they had never known or dreamed of (often with tears of joy and gratitude streaming down their faces).
— Rev. J. Randy Myers, President, Chaplain Service Prison Ministry of Virginia
In 1996 I was assigned to be the Warden at the Marion Correctional Institution. It was a dark place and Kairos brought the light of love and hope. Over the next ten years the miracles mounted, peace replaced violence, hope replaced despair, broken relationships were restored and incarcerated men lived their faith unapologetically. The culture of the prison changed dramatically.
— Christine M. Money, Former Warden, Marion Correctional Institution, Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction
To the incarcerated in Georgia's prison, Kairos Prison Ministry is a stepping stone to changed lives. The influence of Kairos is evident in the attitude, improved behavior, and accountability of the graduates. There is evident change in those who have attended. They now have tools to make better decisions and choices in their lives.
— Brian Owens, Commisioner, Georgia Department of Corrections
The advantages the Texas Department of Criminal Justice has with the Kairos programs available is a magnificent testimony. The encouragement and guidance of the volunteers with the program is a blessing. The Kairos has an endearing touch for the experience and the testimonies which are shared for the offenders and staff. The Kairos program is all about our "future."
— C,. Smith, Senior Warden, Richard P. LeBlanc Unit, Texas Department of Criminal Justice
Research proves the most effective ministries to offenders combine evangelism, discipleship and mentoring. Kairos has figured out these interventions are important not only inside but outside the prison walls.”
— Dr. Byron Johnson Author of More God, Less Crime; Distinguished Professor of the Social Sciences; Director, Institute for Studies of Religion; Director, Program on Prosocial Behavior, Baylor University