Issue 123 Captive Faith

What's inside

Prison as a parish: Christian inmates

Christians in prison have shared similar stories through 2,000 years.

Roy Stults and Jennifer Woodruff Tait

Christians on trial

Enduring testimonies from people in tight places

Dwight D. Brautigam

Thinking long thoughts

From prison, Christians have produced classic literature that comforts and challenges.

Catherine Barnett

Paradoxes of prison

For some prisoners, the plunge into the depths became a step heavenward.

Dan Graves

Prison as a parish: Christian responses

How Christians have tried to reform the justice system and minister to prisoners

Todd V. Cioffi

Joys and challenges

What does prison ministry look like today? We Interviewed five individuals active in prison ministry to get first-hand accounts.

Jim Forbes, Christiana DeGroot, Joe Roche, Jack Heller, Susannah Moore

Captive Faith, Did You Know?

Prisons and prison ministries from the Bible to the present day

the editors

Letters to the editor

Readers in prison respond to Christian History


Editor's note: Captive faith

In 2008, our founder Dr. Ken Curtis (1939–2011) wrote this introduction for prison testimonies throughout church history.

Ken Curtis

“I am hoping God will answer your prayers”

The first letters we have from an imprisoned Christian are from the apostle Paul.

Apostle Paul

“Mine Was the Victory”

Perpetua wrote an account of her imprisonment and trials.


“Much more I rejoiced in the Lord”

What Lollards suffered.

William Thorpe

Christian History Timeline: Crime and punishment

Prisons, prison ministries, and Christians

the editors

“Keep my fur cloak in memory of me”

Letters Hus wrote from prison.

Jan Hus

William Morgan’s gift

An obscure Irish teenager inspired Methodists to Undertake over 200 years of prison ministry

Kevin M. Watson

“I shall be patient”

The only writing in Tyndale’s hand still extant

William Tyndale

“Heaven at last the wrong shall right”

One man’s thwarted attempts to change American prisons

Jennifer Graber

“To God alone we cry and weep”

Held by the Maltese Inquisition

Katharine Evans and Sarah Cheevers

Prisons today by the numbers

Some figures to put American prisons in perspective.

the editors

“God is here, deliverance has come, and there is hope”

Reflections of two prisoners

Eric Dickerson and Matthew Harper

Captive faith: Recommended resources

Here are some recommendations from CH editorial staff and this issue’s authors to help you navigate the history of Christians in prison and Christians ministering to prisoners.

the editors
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