Where am I?
Hussung Leads Retreat for Prisoners
by Joel Ocampo '13
English teacher Chuck Hussung recently helped lead a special Prison Kairos retreat in Potosi, Mo. The Prison Kairos was held at the Potosi Correctional Center, a maximum security prison that currently houses most of Missouri’s capital punishment and life sentence inmates.
This October Prison Kairos marked the fifth Kairos that the Potossi prison has hosted. The prison hosts a Kairos retreat for its inmates every six months. This four day retreat, which draws from many of the same themes as a the student Kairos tailors the retreat to the unique experiences and backgrounds of prison inmates.
Although this Kairos prison program caters to a different group of people, the retreat is much like the student Kairos that is also held at SLUH.
In a presentation at activity period on Monday, Hussung shared that when he first learned about the Prison Kairos through a friend from his church, “the response of the inmates sounded a lot like the response of the students here.”
Although this was Mr. Hussung’s first time taking part in and leading a Prison Kairos, Hussung is no stranger to the retreat itself. Hussung, who has served student Kairos retreats since Kairos 1 here at SLUH, has been on Kairos retreats since the retreat started here. Hussung said that part of his willingness to help lead this Prison Kairos was actually due to his many experiences with SLUH Kairos retreats.
“I knew the retreat. It was something I was familiar with and something I cherished. I just thought I’ve got to do this,” Hussung said.
Despite sharing many of the themes and qualities of the student Kairos, the prison Kairos also had some unique features tailored to theinmates’ experiences of the inmates. One unique feature about the prison Kairos is the quality and amount of food served.
“Food there is supposed to be high quality and lots of it, and it’s supposed to be emblematic of God’s love,” said Hussung
The food helps to symbolize God’s abundant and everlasting love. The high quality home-cooked food that is available to the retreat participants throughout the day for the whole retreat means a lot to the inmates, who are more used to three scheduled meals consisting of mass-produced, processed food.
Coming back from the retreat, Hussung also felt that his experiences there would help to enhance his experience as a SLUH Kairos leader in the future.
After participating in the prison Kairos, the inmates are encouraged to live the message of the retreat through various services offered after the retreat. After the retreat, the inmates who participated in the prison Kairos are invited to weekly Pray and Shares where the participants meet to pray and to share their experiences with one another.
Along with the weekly meetings, the inmates are invited to monthly reunions with past retreat participants.
Finally, the prison Kairos alums are invited to help serve in future Kairos retreats by helping to serve the food in other retreats.
Although Hussung says that he would not be able to lead another prison retreat because the amount of time required to help lead would conflict with his school schedule, he encourages any SLUH alum or parent to consider taking part in leading this retreat.
The prison Kairos was started and is sponsored by Kairos Prison Ministry International, which promotes transforming the lives of and instilling a sense of Christian love in the inmates who participate in the Kairos prison retreat.
The Kairos Prison Ministry International hosts different types of Kairos retreats for prison inmates. Their different retreats include the Kairos Inside, which is the standard four-day retreat for inmates; the Kairos Outside, which is a retreat for the female family members of the various incarcerated inmates; and the Kairos Torch, which is a retreat that focuses on incarcerated young people ages 25 and younger.
- 12/06/2013 10:38:25 | Fields ’14 Takes POL for Second Year in a Row
- 12/06/2013 10:31:07 | Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony Opens Garden
- 12/03/2013 16:08:42 | Iyer '14 to Publish Research
- 12/02/2013 13:33:54 | Robinson Triplets Hit Mark
- 11/25/2013 14:59:21 | Liberating Work
- 11/25/2013 11:14:18 | Godar ’14 Attends NJCL Meeting
- 11/19/2013 11:08:23 | Rising Young Star
- 11/18/2013 12:05:50 | Fathers, Sons Lend Helping Hand
- 11/18/2013 11:11:28 | SoccerBills Advance to Semifinals
- 11/14/2013 14:56:06 | Chinese Idol