Winter Feast for the Soul Prison In-Reach Program (www.winterfeastforthesoul.com) is dedicated to creating a global community through a shared 40-day commitment to a daily spiritual practice of meditation or prayer. The 40-day period runs from Jan. 15 – Feb 23.
In 2009 a small Buddhist Sangha in Boise, Idaho brought Winter Feast brochures to the local men‘s incarceration center, where they were teaching meditation. 10 prisoners signed up for the Winter Feast that year. This started us thinking about how we could support incarcerated individuals with finding inner peace by developing a spiritual practice. Since then, we have expanded our outreach through a journal for prisoners known as Freedom Inside and individual coaching. Our outreach program now includes about 50 volunteer spiritual practitioners or coaches who correspond regularly with prisoners who would like support with their spiritual practices during the Feast and year-round.
Prison Outreach is an on-going, integral part of the Contemplative Outreach family. This important ministry is committed to support volunteers and organizations willing to serve the prison population.
Support consists of consultation, resources and access to a central database of all prison ministry activities nationwide involving Centering Prayer. We hope to encourage and assist those interested in beginning a prison ministry or to provide connections between practitioners already in the ministry who want to share and learn together.
Mary Wyman – CO Chapter Coordinator
San Francisco CA- development of Prison Outreach Conference/Retreat.
Barbara Cook – prison ministry
Hobby Unit- (women) Marlin TX, experiences with conferences and workshops
Douglas La Plant – prison ministry
SCI Rockview, Bellefante PA
Teaching “A Pathway to Freedom” course to men.
Khalilah Bilal – prison ministry
Bexar County Jail- San Antonio TX
Teaching “A Pathway to Freedom” course to women
Hongaku Jodo school of Buddhism and its clergy are devoted to service and to meeting the spiritual needs of those incarcerated in prisons or detained in other institutions, via distance learning.
We are a non-demonitational group at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in downtown Chicago. We meet once a week for an hour. We practice Mindfulness Meditation (Vipassana) and follow some of the protocol of MBSR, and Prison Mindfulness Institute. I am most interested in being in contact with other groups which are trying to introduce meditation into Correctional facilities, without the mantle of Buddhism.
Graduates of PMI’s Path of Freedom webinar run a program at the Cook County Jail in Chicago.
This project is dedicated to fostering individual insight and compassion among Cook County Jail’s inmates and prison staff. Transforming people’s minds and hearts through the practice of various mindfulness and awareness techniques is a first step toward positively transforming society.
The Prairie Zen Center currently provides prison outreach services at four of the Central Illinois Correctional Centers, Login CC and Lincoln CC, both in Lincoln, IL; Illinois River CC in Canton, IL; and Graham CC in Hillsboro, IL. They are led by Al Daijin Kamnick.
Our resident teacher is Elihu Genmyo Smith, the first Dharma Heir of Charlotte Joko Beck and co-founder of the Ordinary Mind Zen School. Our schedule includes weekly sittings, periodic workshops, and sesshin six times a year.
Prisons Served: Central Illinois Correctional Centers, Login CC and Lincoln CC, both in Lincoln, IL; Illinois River CC in Canton, IL; and Graham CC in Hillsboro, IL