Spiritual forces in prison chaplains

As a Hawaii state volunteer chaplain since 1999, we are most often the one who has to find a way to maintain security, bring hope to the hopeless, give reassurance to the fearful, assure the administration that we will let them know of any “rumblings” and satisfy their endorsing authority that we chaplains are bringing an orthodox viewpoint to the inmates.

We often are left to try to introduce hope to people who have lost hope and encourage them to believe in a God of mercy and forgiveness, that has had no mercy on them, and they experience no forgiveness of their understandable resentments and fears.

Unfortunately, the victims of crime are often the families of the inmates, and in some cases, the inmates themselves. I assure you, chaplains are doing a good, honest and responsible job. We give a great deal of ourselves to the job, as the most important asset in a correctional facility.

Not only does a chaplain create a calming atmosphere, but we also reinforce the importance of civilized social behavior to people who otherwise often feel totally justified in acting out their frustrations, anger and feelings of persecution. Spiritual forces in chaplains maintain highest value.

Rev. Henrietta P. Hashimoto