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Faith Inside: a guide for Catholics in prison

2016-09-15 13:18

Many prison inmates find their sentence is a time for a very deeply personal soul searching.  As a result, some people discover God and, hidden from public gaze, try to turn around their lives. Unexpectedly, prison becomes a place where they find both wholeness and holiness.

Within the prison environment, inmates daily face challenges to their sense of self, their families, their faith and their futures. Many also encounter further stressors in the form of radicalisation, drug abuse, self-harm and other negative agendas. These form part of their daily struggle to “make good” in the light of their growing religious awareness and understanding.

Faith Inside: a guide for Catholics in prison is the first-ever catechetical resource uniquely tailored to the needs of Catholics in UK prisons.  It is a direct response to a need expressed by chaplains, current and former inmates. Addressed to people with widely varying personal stories and motivation, Faith Inside is written by Fr Eddie McGhee, a serving prison chaplain in Scotland.

In order to create Faith Inside: a guide for Catholics in prison, Redemptorist Publications, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales and the Bishops Conference of Scotland have worked closely with prison chaplains, serving and former inmates.

The book begins with the participant’s arrest and looks towards the possibility of release and rehabilitation, taking the inmate on a journey through fundamental Christian beliefs, prayer, the sacraments, coping with death and bereavement, and preparation for release.

The resource consists of a book for each prisoner, which they can personalise and keep. There is also a leader's book which the chaplain may adapt for use in individual or group situations. Importantly, Faith Inside is created to allow for periodic lockdowns in which participants might be confined to their cells.

Generously sponsored by The Jerusalem Trust, Faith Inside: a guide for Catholics in prison will be followed, in early 2017, by an ecumenical edition for other Christians in prison.

Speaking on behalf of Redemptorist Publications, Publishing Director Fr Denis McBride C.Ss.R. said that “the company is absolutely delighted to publish Faith Inside, especially during the Year of Mercy. Its outreach to some of the most marginalised and forgotten members of society is in complete harmony, both with the original inspiration of St Alphonsus Liguori, Founder of the Redemptorists, and also with the iconic example of Pope Francis’ own concern for those in prison.”

Bishop Richard Moth, Liaison Bishop for Prisons of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, commented, “This resource shows the way for anyone who is thinking seriously about the Catholic faith while they are in prison. It will help them to come to a clearer understanding of the treasures of our faith and how they themselves are loved and welcomed by God and by the Catholic Community. I am sure that it will prove to be a real blessing for all who use it.”

To request your free Faith Inside information pack please contact

Click here to order the leader's and participant's book.

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