What’s the worst thing you have ever done?

Written by Andrew Studdert-Kennedy on .

Prisons Week October 9th – 15th 2016

Part of being human is that we make mistakes and get things wrong. We will all have had accidents or done things that we regret and wish to forget about. Sometimes the memory of them is such that years later they can still make us shudder. Most of the time, however, we can put such things behind us and carry on with our lives.

But imagine if we couldn’t do this and that we were remembered, or defined even, by the worst thing we have ever done. How then would we be described?  Dishonest, untrustworthy, angry, cowardly? Or worse?

Being defined by the worst thing we have ever done is an issue that I reflect on every year during Prisons Week because people in prison tend to be defined in just this way, be it by murder, rape, theft or fraud.

For forty years now, Prisons Week has set aside a special week of the year to enable prayer for the needs of all those affected by prisons: prisoners and their families, victims of crime and their communities, those working in the criminal justice system and the many people who are involved in caring for those affected by crime on the inside and outside of our prisons.

In this fortieth anniversary year, local churches are putting on a special Debate which will explore some of the issues surrounding Prisons and the Criminal Justice System.

Prison: Why go there?  A Debate for Prisons Week

Wednesday October 12th 2016 7.00pm, Marlborough Town Hall

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The prison population of England and Wales stood at 84,400 in June this year, a total that has nearly doubled since 1993 and which represents the highest imprisonment rate of any country in Western Europe.  Yet, with 46% of adults re-offending within one year of release, prison doesn’t appear to be working.  36% the prison population are estimated to have a physical or mental disability and nearly one third have learning difficulties.

A Judge, a former Prison Chaplain and a campaigner for Prison Reform will lead the discussion and the Bishop of Ramsbury, Rt Rev’d Dr Edwrad Condry, will chair the ensuing conversation.

Do come along to contribute your thoughts as well as to listen!

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