Yom Chamishi, 13 AdarI 5781
Ta anith Esther Thursday, 25 February 2021
An insight into faith in prison

12 January 2016

Rabbi Danny Rich, the senior rabbi of Liberal Judaism and a prison and hospital chaplain, has given an insight into prison life for people of faith.

Delivering a speech to the Council of Christians and Jews, and then to Limmud, Danny discussed what prison chaplaincy, as he has experienced it, can teach us about faith dialogue.

After giving the facts and figures, Danny discusses what we can say about those who choose to utilise the services of chaplaincy?

At the last count, in 2012, there were 252 prison inmates who identified as Jewish, which works out as 0.3% of the current prison population.

Danny discusses the various Jewish people he meets in prison, before concluding: “They frequently fall into one of two categories. There are those who seek to use both their Judaism and their life story as an excuse for poor behaviour. They are the victim in a perverse sort of way and their inability to see beyond their own pain makes genuine dialogue difficult to achieve.  The others use their Judaism and their own life story as a means of wielding soft power and their desire to be triumphant often makes remorse difficult to achieve.”

You can download a copy of the speech, entitled ‘A peek over the prison wall’, by clicking here.