Three of our younger volunteers tell us about their involvement in prison ministry
Five years ago, after the birth of my only son, I developed postpartum psychosis and was sectioned. I was locked up in various psychiatric units, for two months without my son and then spent one month with him on a Mother and Baby Unit. This experience, although obviously different to prison, made me empathise on a much deeper level with prisoners than ever before. I felt God could really use me to encourage those in prison struggling with their own mental health, so I started making investigations. I initially signed up for the Letter Link programme, but soon joined my local PF group’s prayer meeting and attended a service in the prison chapel one Sunday —and the rest is history!
I played piano for the first time in a chapel service the other week and was quite nervous as I haven’t played in public for 18 months due to the pandemic. But there was one guy dancing to my playing and a number came up to me afterwards to say how much they appreciated having live music after such a long time without!
Prison is such a leveller —it keeps me humble, remembering that we are all equal in God’s sight and all loved just the same, no matter what we have done. So many of the guys I meet, I would never imagine that they were prisoners, were it not for the context in which I find them; they are some of the warmest, most kind-hearted people.
For information on becoming a PF volunteer, please visit prisonfellowship.org.uk/get-involved