We look forward to the voices of prisoners and their families being heard in parishes making the Stations of the Cross in many parts of England & Wales.
There are more than 93,000 children in England and Wales whose mum or dad is in prison today. There are certainly families in your parish or in your community who have lived experience of having a loved one ‘inside’.
Pact is the national Catholic charity that supports prisoners, people with convictions, and their children and families. We provide caring and life changing services at every stage of the criminal justice process: in court, in prison, on release, and in the community.
During Lent last year, Pact produced a new Stations of the Cross liturgy. The simple text incorporates the words of prisoners, people with convictions and people who have served a ‘hidden sentence’ alongside a family member in prison. Bishop Richard Moth, Liaison Bishop for Prisons, made the Stations of the Cross using this text in the chapel at HMP Send, a women’s prison. At each station, the women read the words of the scriptures and Bishop Richard read the words from prisoners and their families. Some of the women wanted to take the sheets of paper back to their cell to pray through the liturgy again because they had found it very moving.
For Lent this year, Pact has created an illustrated Stations of the Cross booklet featuring that beautiful text and now images from the Benedictine Sisters at Turvey Abbey, used with permission. We are sharing the booklet with prison chaplains, Pact parish reps, supporters and friends. We are also sharing it with the women at HMP Send so they have something even more special to take back to their cell and pray through this year.
We invite you to use the liturgy in your parish or community during Lent. We look forward to the voices of prisoners and their families being heard in parishes making the Stations of the Cross in many parts of England & Wales. How wonderful that those of us ‘on the outside’, can join in prayer with those of us ‘on the inside’ through this liturgy. ‘All my life I’d been in this defeated place. I thought I was just a bad person; a bad apple and I was just going to be like that for the rest of my life… For the first time in my life, I was not just wanting to be a good person but trying to be a good person on a daily basis and having the tools to do it through prayer.’
You can freely download Pact’s text-only Stations of the Cross liturgy here: Stations of the Cross | Prison Advice and Care Trust.
If you would like a copy of the illustrated booklet, please contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
Pact’s vision is of a society in which justice is understood as a process of restoration and healing, in which prisons are used sparingly and as places of learning and rehabilitation, and in which the innate dignity and worth of every human being is valued. We work for the common good of society, taking a public health-based approach. We work at the intersection of criminal justice, child and family welfare, mental health, wellbeing provision and health and social care.
Join Pact at its next online JustPeople workshop on 18 February or 29 March
Make a Lenten pilgrimage from your parish to a prison
Make a donation to support Pact’s work
Contact Theresa email@example.com