MORRILTON, Ark. – Conway County Detention Facility inmates are getting a second chance to rebuild their life all through the working of the jail’s chaplain bringing faith behind bars.
Chaplain Kevin West said even if someone is in a dark place mentally, or in jail, Christ is always there. West goes on to say the facility closed its doors to some resources like chaplains for two years because of the pandemic but last year they started letting them back in.
The facility has 77 inmates and West said it is helping some find their way and a second chance.
“We help them get through some of the things they are struggling with,” West said.
“We have baptized 14 since the first of the year that are at the detention center,” West said.
He said after talking with inmates he has noticed a common reason for how many have been arrested and put in jail.
“Right now, in the state of Arkansas 80 to 85 percent are there because of drug offenses,” West said.
West said by using recovery bibles it teaches inmates the twelve-step process.
“Since I started in December, it’s exciting to see the excitement in them to know that they can be free of the addictions,” West said.
West went on to talk about the progress the detention facility is making on the Leaf Ministries Radio with the host Craig Beck, who said he knows all about getting second chances and finding faith at the facility.
“I have been in that jail and not been able to leave years ago,” Beck said.
Beck said that after learning about faith he felt driven to be a part of the Leaf Ministries Radio and hopes to spread hope to other inmates when they’re released.
“(Help inmates) see that hope is out there and you can get through anything,” Beck said.
West hopes to expand a recovery program inside the jail to further help inmates find a new path in life.
“Have it (recovery program) be led by different recovery groups, so they can build relationships with these inmates and bridge that gap between the detention center and back out,” West said.