Praying for our prisons

With so many men and women in our prisons wanting to be free from the life of crime in which they feel trapped, there are enormous opportunities for the gospel. And, of course, there are many pastoral needs, too, not only amongst those serving a prison sentence but also within their families.

May we encourage you to pray for our prisons?

Those who wish to pray daily through the month may like to follow the monthly plan below and perhaps also pray specifically for one or two prisons.


December 2023

Week 1 - for those in prison
448 1st

for those due to be released over the next few weeks and feeling very nervous; pray for effective support, both prior to, and after, release.

449 2nd

for those desperate to be free from drug and alcohol addictions, that they will receive appropriate support both in prison and on release, especially through ‘rehabs’.

450 3rd

for Christians as they are released, especially those with no church connection, that they will be linked to a supportive church.

451 4th

for those who spend extended periods in segregation because they are a threat to others. Pray for healing of the causes of their aggressive and threatening behaviour.  Pray that, in their isolation, they might cry out to the Lord.

452 5th

for chaplains as they finalise the arrangements, and publicity, for the Carol Services.

453 6th

for vulnerable women who will be released this month, that they will receive effective support for as long as it is needed.

454 7th

for the men and women who are fearful about the future, that they might turn to Christ and find hope, both for this life and for eternity.

Week 2 - for those who work in prison
455 8th

that all the Carol Services will run smoothly and be well attended and that many will grasp the true meaning of Christmas this year.

456 9th

for all officers on sick leave as a result of injury or stress-related illness, especially those who have been victims of  a serious assault. Pray for their healing.

457 10th

for healthcare staff, that they will be enabled to care with skill, love and compassion, despite all the demands upon them.  Give thanks to God for them. Pray especially for Christians, that they might display Christ’s love to those for whom they care.

458 11th

for the newly recruited officers, that they will be kept safe during their early days of becoming familiar with the prison regime. Pray for the experienced officers who oversee them.

459 12th

for the recruitment of officers and staff where needed; pray for the staff in those prisons who are working under considerable pressures.

460 13th

for the Lord’s help to volunteers engaged in letter writing, that their letters will bring comfort and encouragement to the men and women who receive them.

461 14th

for those preparing messages for chapel services this coming Sunday, that the Holy Spirit will give them the words to speak; pray that the gospel will be proclaimed boldly.

Week 3 - for families and communities
462 15th

for children with a parent in prison that, wherever possible and appropriate, they will be able to maintain contact with their parent. Pray for the protection of those children who are at risk of turning to crime themselves.

463 16th

for the Christian chaplains for whom Christmas is always an especially busy time. Pray that the Lord will sustain them and they will be encouraged in their ministry.

464 17th

for probation staff, community chaplains and all who support men and women on release from prison.  Pray that the vulnerable will get the help they need to prevent them from reoffending.

465 18th

for communities troubled by an increase in violent crime, that effective policing will reverse the trend.

466 19th

for families increasingly affected by the rising costs of living, that they will access the support and benefits to which they are entitled without any delay.

467 20th

for churches which have a dedicated ministry to ‘ex-offenders’, that they will have sufficient volunteers to give time to mentoring and supporting the men and women referred to them.

468 21st

for men and women for whom this is their first Christmas in prison and are struggling to cope, that others will encourage and support them.

Week 4 - for those in prison
469 22nd

for prisoners’ families saddened by the absence of loved ones. Pray especially for partners, children and parents.

470 23rd

for victims of crime and their families, particularly for those who have been badly injured, and for those who have lost loved ones, as a result of violent crime this year.

471 24th

for all prison staff, that they will enjoy time celebrating at home with family and friends. Give thanks to God for all who serve in our prisons.

472 25th

that peace will prevail throughout all prisons, as the birth of the Prince of Peace is celebrated today.

473 26th

that many men and women  will recognise that Jesus truly was born to save them from their sins and will find salvation in Him.

474 27th

for all prison staff as they support and care for the men and women for whom this is a particularly painful season.

475 28th

during this post-Christmas and New Year period there will be an even higher risk of self-harm. Pray that the vulnerable will be kept safe and staff will be especially alert to their needs.

Week 5 - for victims of crime
476 29th

for families (and communities) grieving the loss of a young person through knife crime. Pray for church leaders as they provide support.

477 30th

for those feeling the shame of a crime committed by a family member and consider themselves victims (and perhaps ostracised in their community); pray that they will find support from Christians and be enabled to forgive their family member.

478 31st

for victims whose lives have been seriously impacted by injuries and trauma; pray for their healing and that they will be enabled to live fulfilled lives.