(Excerpt from a letter)
Thanks for the notice on your parole board hearing. I’ve marked my calendar and will be praying for you. I know that you have done all that you can to prepare and will interview well.
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your brothers as you prepare for the upcoming KERYX* weekend. What will happen will be life changing for everyone involved. The lost will find what they are looking for. The spiritually hungry will be fed. Servants will get better at serving. Spiritual mentors will meet new disciples. Leaders will have their leadership tested.
Funny how that works. That’s probably why the Apostle Paul cautions those who would aspire to be leaders in I Timothy 3. My observation is that leadership is often a thankless task that involves the arcane skill of herding cats. Christian leaders do it from their knees with their hands firmly clasped together and their heads bowed. While this sounds like a Zen thing it is really a Sinai thing. Moses is the archetype of a Christian leader. His leadership ability was recognized in the Old Testament in Psalms 106, the New Testament in Hebrews 11:23-28, and in the Apocrypha in Sirach 45:1-5. (Yes, I really did reference the Apocrypha.) The characteristics of Christian leadership that he modeled include:
- Standing in the gap for your flock.
- Speaking only the words given to you by God.
- Leading only where God’s Spirit guides.
- You will take heat for your leadership from the people, it’s about how you handle the heat.
- Leaders are called by God to serve.
- Believe in miracles.
- Fast and Pray!
- Not all leaders will make it to the promised land.
- A leaders responsibility is to prepare the next generation of leaders.
Use your final months wisely. Leave your mark on prison rather than letting prison leave it’s mark on you. Even while you are looking forward, don’t forget to keep you head on a swivel.
Your Brother in Christ
*Keryx is a lay-led, non-profit, interdenominational, Christian ministry using the Cursillo method, designed to be conducted in any correctional institution without substantive change in format or procedure.
The purpose of Keryx Ministries is the Christianization of the correctional institution or community through the actions of small apostolic prayer support groups, trained and encouraged by Keryx volunteers, working within their environment. Through a systematic, structured program, the participants are given the opportunity to experience a religious renewal and to accept God’s call to a life of Christian witness and service to one another .
Keryx has been called the most effective program at changing basic attitudes of the incarcerated currently offered in prisons. This statement has been said over and over again by prison administrators where the ministry has been active long enough for its impact on the institution to have been evaluated by correctional staff.
Keryx is a highly structured program that promotes solid Christian life-skills. The program builds a positive and loving environment. Keryx calls upon a spirituality that has long been dormant in many of the resident leaders within the institution.keryx.org website