Report by Ben Nyamburi, Field Administrator, 20th December 2011
As many prepare to celebrate Christmas in different ways, we at Philemon Kenya also have been preparing to share it with prisoners as a way of demonstrating the love that God showed us through giving us His son Jesus.
On 10th December, the team from Philemon took their Christmas gifts to Kitui Prison, in South-Eastern Kenya.
There are 500 prisoners at Kitui Prison, including 30 women and 9 children with their mothers.
We had a good fellowship with the prisoners, whereby Pastor Makau, our volunteer partner, shared the word of God. The gifts that were given to prisoners included bread, milk, sweets, pads for women, Vaseline and soft drinks for children.
Even the officers each received bread and milk. Kitui is one of the more welcoming prisons we work in. The team from Philemon were Ben and Antony.
Langata Women's Prison
On 16th December, we visited condemned in-mates at Langata Women's Prison. We had good fellowship and interaction with the prisoners. Sheena shared the word of God and conducted holy communion, which a number of the inmates received.
The condemned section has 40 women, and two children, both of whom are boys.
In the ceremony, we prepared chapattis, beef stew, sodas and fruit. Gifts included soaps, tissue paper, vaseline, women's pads, and sweets. A lot was shared with these women. The officers too were very friendly, and some of them were the ones who prepared the meals for the inmates. The officer-in-charge was not there, but we were received by her deputy. The team from Philemon consisted of Sheena, Ben, and three former women ex-prisoners who are members of the Nairobi support group.
Finally, our Christmas celebrations in prisons took us to Athi-River Prison, which is in the Rift Valley (but administratively in Nairobi). We visited on the 17th December. This prison has 536 inmates. It is a male prison, and we were received by the deputy officer-in-charge, on behalf of the officer-in-charge who was not there.
We enjoyed the live praise and worship by the prisoners' praise team before Sheena shared the word of God. We then distributed the Christmas gifts. Each prisoner feasted on bread and milk, and the officers too received a loaf of bread. The team from Philemon were Sheena, Ben, Kyalo, Stella, Jane and Karitu.
May I take this opportunity to thank all who made these activities possible. To our UK board we salute for the kind donation towards this. This is just the first of many, and so we call for unity and warm partnership in all areas of this ministry.