Kairos Prison Ministry International

What is Kairos?

Our History 

The first 3-day "short course in Christianity" inside a prison was held at Union Correctional Institution in Raiford, Florida, in the fall of 1976.  It was called "Cursillo in Prison."  By 1978, several states were presenting the Cursillo in Prison program in their prisons.  As the ministry grew, Cursillo of Florida asked the group to more closely align the program with inmate needs.  In 1979 "Kairos" which in Greek means "God's Special Time," was born.  Today, this program is referred to as Kairos Inside.

In the late '80s a chaplain at San Quentin Prison sensed that incarcerated Kairos participants were now open to reuniting with their families.  The chaplain asked Kairos to create a program that might minister to the female family members of the incarcerated.  In April 1990, the second of the Kairos programs, Kairos Outside, held their first weekend in northern California.

Kairos Torch, Kairos's third program, held its first weekend program in September 1997 at a youth facility in Oklahoma.  The Torch program is directed toward young people (under 25) who are experiencing incarceration. With well trained mentor volunteers, Torch encourages the youthful offenders to recognize their God-given potential, and help them to develop skills to lead a productive life and have hope for the future.

Kairos Prison Ministry Today

Today, Kairos Inside, Kairos Outside and Kairos Torch together comprise Kairos Prison Ministry International.  Kairos is an international ministry with over 36,000 volunteers donating more than three million hours of service every single year!  These volunteers are bringing the love of Christ to more than 400 institutions and nearly 100 Kairos Outside communities in 37 states and 9 countries including Costa Rica, Australia, South Africa, England, Canada, Northern Ireland, Dominican Republic and Peru.

Kairos Statement of Faith

The people of Kairos are called by God to share the love of Christ with those impacted by incarceration. Kairos encourages believers from a variety of Christian traditions to be volunteers in this Christ-filled ministry.

Kairos programs offer to prison residents, their families, and those who work with them the opportunity to receive God’s forgiveness through faith in Jesus Christ, and to grow in their faith and servant hood in Christian community. We stand on the common ground of the following elements of faith:

We in Kairos believe:

  • The Bible is God’s authoritative and inspired word for our faith and our lives.
  • In the Trinity of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
  • In the deity, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
  • Friendship with God is a free gift, for God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.
  • The love of Jesus Christ motivates His followers to provide food for the hungry, drink to the thirsty, welcome to the stranger, clothes for the naked and visits to the sick and those in prison.
  • In sharing the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ with all incarcerated individuals, their families and to those who work with them inside and outside the correctional institution. 

Kairos Vision

A Community spiritually freed from the effects of imprisonment reaching all impacted by incarceration, through the love, hope, and faith found in Jesus Christ.

Kairos Mission

The mission of the Kairos Prison Ministry is to share the transforming love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ to impact the hearts and lives of incarcerated men, women and youth, as well as their families, to become loving and productive citizens of their communities.

Kairos Core Values