CBI Director, Jefferson Gathu with Crossroad students in Nyrei PrisonWhen Crossroad Bible Institute’s satellite campus in Kenya plans events, they go big—really big. A few years ago, CBI Kenya hosted a three-thousand person march for its reentry program, and this year they hosted national delegates and over 325 attendees at a three-day prison ministry conference. CBI Kenya’s director, Jefferson Gathu, organized the event, which turned out to be the largest conference CBI Kenya has ever hosted.

CBI Kenya's director Jefferson Gathu giving a keynote address.

CBI Kenya’s director Jefferson Gathu giving a keynote address.

The conference aimed to assemble leaders from across the country, including chaplains, ministry directors and corrections officials, in order to foster dialogue on one important theme: effective discipleship and rehabilitative training in the prisons. Gathu said this issue drew many distinguished guests to the event, such as President Lincoln Murdoch of Step Up to Life Ministries, the commissioner of the General Kenyan Prison and the principal chaplain of Kenya. Eight regional dignitaries were also present.

Crossroad’s United States headquarters also made an appearance in the form of a letter of address from CBI’s president, Dr. David Schuringa. “All who are gathered here may represent different nations, different languages and different cultures. But we gather here united for one purpose: to disciple those within our prisons,” wrote Dr. Schuringa in a letter, which Gathu read to the attendees. Gathu reported that everyone received Dr. Schuringa’s words with great enthusiasm.

Gathu further highlighted the importance of caring for prisoners’ spiritual lives in his own keynote speech. He described the warm reception that CBI Kenya has experienced in the prisons and how Crossroad’s Bible study courses have shown great potential for use in reentry training and rehabilitative programming.

Delegates gathering outside for a photo.

Delegates gathering outside for a photo.

“I was able to use the conference as a platform to promote CBI’s materials,” said Gathu. “I’m hopeful this will lead to growth of the Crossroad program.” With so many ministries and government agencies represented, this event certainly bodes well for CBI Kenya’s continued growth, in addition to its thirty-three students already enrolled.

“Director Jefferson Gathu is making great strides to spread the word about Crossroad and about how rehabilitation for prisoners must always start with the heart,” said Dr. Schuringa in response to Gathu’s report. “We praise God for such encouraging news about this event and continue to be inspired by the passion and initiative our Kenyan brothers and sisters have for ministering to God’s people in prison.”