Chaplains to the Imprisoned : Sharing Life with the Incarcerated
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Chaplains to the Imprisoned begins to fill the information gap through its in-depth study of prison chaplains as seen by co-workers, inmates, and the chaplains themselves. They describe their roles, share difficulties which are encountered in their ministry, and personal methods for coping with these difficulties, especially those which may be internalized as stress. The author, a Roman Catholic priest with a doctorate in criminal justice, provides a fascinating look into the work of chaplains who serve in correctional institutions. This new book sheds a much-needed light on the often hidden, yet significant, role played by chaplains within correctional facilities. Little is known of these chaplains and the work that they do. Though they are frequently depicted in television and film, many of these images are stereotypes from writers'imaginations. In this unique book, chaplains speak for themselves through the results of a survey questionnaire sent by the author to local- and state-level chaplains in New York State and to chaplains throughout the federal prison system. Chaplains to the Imprisoned, the first non-denominational book on these clergy, explores: * the history of chaplaincy in this country, including the irony that chaplains have often been treated as unwanted intruders in penitentiaries--which were created originally by religious groups * chaplains as seen by other professionals in the field--sometimes positive, often negative, opinions of chaplains drawn from literature written by wardens, corrections officers, and others who deal with chaplains on a routine basis * chaplains as seen by inmates--published opinions by inmates who have recorded their impressions of facility chaplains * chaplains as seen by chaplains--their own descriptions of their work, frustrations, successes, and failures, along with suggestions for the betterment of the role of chaplains This book is an eye-opening look into the world of prison chaplaincy for students of criminal justice and religion, policymakers for prisons and jails, seminary students, and clergy members themselves, as well as individuals interested in what often goes on behind prison walls from a chaplain's perspective.