Nairobi West Prison
Alpha in the Kenyan Prisons has met with much enthusiasm as the Prison Chaplains have seen the inmates transformed through the power of the Holy Spirit while on Alpha. Rev. Masai Kahindi, the Alpha Kenya National Prisons Coordinator, has ably managed to propagate Alpha in Kenya through his hard work with the inmates which has earned him respect with the Prisons Authorities and led to him being given a permit to enter all the Prisons in the country.
Nairobi West Prison recently began its first Alpha in the Catholic Context.
From the beginning it was apparent that the most engaging parts of the sessions would be the discussions when the inmates were afforded the opportunity to share personal experiences and ask any questions they like. During the third session, a lot of the discussion centred on sinning and its consequences.
It was during the fourth session when we began to review the previous week that we realized that the discussion and topic had resonated with everyone deeply. As we began to cover “How can I be sure of my faith?” the inmates informed us that the day before had been visiting day.
One inmate, Wafula, said:
“As we went through last week's session on “Why did Jesus die?” I learned a lot of things. I realized that Jesus Christ died for my sins out of love and not anything else. My concept of sin was completely illuminated. I had been living with a very casual approach to what sin really is. To me it was more about making a mistake and saying sorry casually as if nothing had happened. Having heard the talk on sin’s consequences and its power, which I had underestimated, my perspective was completely changed. At this juncture it dawned on me that His forgiveness of my sins changes the question. Yes I’m in Prison serving my term but in actual sense I’m a free person.”
Referring to a visit by his wife, he said:
“I was able to have a very fruitful time because I shared with her on the reality of sin as related to my prison sentence. This surprised my wife who now wants to know what had happened to me. I told her about the topic "Why did Jesus die?" As we talked, the barrier of bitterness was completely broken down. I'm so delighted that I could share my faith with my wife and tell her about God's love.”
His powerful testimony of change and redemption spurred others to share their experiences as well.
A fellow inmate, Waweru, said: “After the topic I looked back at my own life and especially times when I had declared myself a Christian. I had been living the life of a backslider. Now I have rededicated my life to Jesus Christ.”
These testimonies are an encouragement to all those involved with Alpha. The love of God knows no bounds and as we continue to run Alpha, lives are being changed.