Day 38

Act 38: Behind Bars
by Brian Heasley
Behind bars for good reason or not, people in prison are often locked out of experiencing basic human kindnesses – the simple joys of community life. Today, offer generosity to people who might feel locked out from ever receiving it, and who might never be able to pay it back: prisoners, young offenders, young people in pupil referral units, and so on.
‘Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.’ 
(Hebrews 13:3 NIV) 
Choose how to complete this act…
GREEN OPTION:Write a letter to a prisoner. Tell them you wanted to get in touch just to say that someone was thinking of them.
YELLOW OPTION:Send a gift to a prisoner, or help prisoners send a gift to their children.
RED OPTION:Visit a prisoner

Like others, when I saw today’s act I wasn’t sure about it. However, I wanted to give it a chance and so I spent quite a bit of time looking into writing to a prisoner. It isn’t simple or straight forward. Some organisations train volunteers – and rightly so – before they are let loose on writing to prisoners or visiting. I thought about writing to someone imprisoned for their beliefs via Amnesty International but searched through their website in vain. In the end I gave up because I had to be out of the house by 9am to go to the cathedral for the morning Maundy Thursday service. It was, as usual, a wonderful time of catching up with people I have known in previous

The afternoon was spent on the phone and visiting due to unexpected circumstances surrounding a funeral that another minister is taking in my church during my post Easter break, and calling round to see our bell ringing captain to see if they were going to ring the bells at 7pm in solidarity with France regarding Notre Dame (her phone wasn’t working). I’d had a message via Facebook to ask if our church was ringing as others in the area were. I didn’t know, but had to find out. All this took up my time that  I thought I would spend doing my final preparation for Good Friday. At least I managed to make the crown of thorns.

This evening’s service went well – including foot washing with lovely warm water that our church warden had put scented stuff in. It is now late. I haven’t written to a prisoner, but at least I tried. (and i don’t know what i’ve done to change the font and i am too tired to figure it out.


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