Agape Explained

Agape explained

 

Agape is an important aspect of all Kairos programmes, and the ministry is in the business of passing on the love of God. In all Kairos programmes, while agape is NOT gifts, we do use material forms of agape to share with our participants and/or guests to invite the wider community to participate in our programmes. Agape is both invisible and visible. Visible agape comes in two forms – general agape and personal agape.

Agape is a way of sharing Christ’s love with Kairos participants or guests without needing to set foot into a correctional facility or participating as a volunteer on a Kairos weekend.

Below is a list and a description of all the agape that Kairos makes use of in the ministry. Should you wish to contribute any agape to any of the Kairos programme, please contact the agape coordinator for the Kairos programme of your choice that is closest to. A list of agape coordinators and be found here https://www.kairosministry.org.za. Should you want to know more about agape you are welcome to email Joan Baker at [email protected]

General agape

Prayer vigil – Kairos is a prayer-based ministry and to this end, no weekend can proceed until the entire weekend from start to finish is covered by continuous prayer. Kairos Inside weekends are covered with 72 hours of prayer, Kairos Torch and Kairos Outside with 48 hours of prayer. Please help us keep our weekends covered by the power of prayer. Prayer slots are 30 minutes each. A list of registered Kairos weekends and available prayer slots can be found via our website through the prayer vigil link: https://www.prayervigils.net/

Prayer chain – as a visible demonstration to our Kairos participants/guests, we decorate our weekend workshop venue with a prayer chain assembled with all the colourful prayer slips we receive for the weekend. A simple prayer, Bible verse or word of encouragement is all that is required to participate in this powerful agape element. Agape coordinators can supply strips of paper or you may contribute your own. A prayer slip is typically 210mm wide x 30mm deep.

 

Home baked biscuits – affectionately referred to as “cookies” in Kairos communities, are a form of agape that get used in vast quantities on any Kairos programme weekend. Home-baked cookies, covered in prayer and God inspired love provide the participants with a form of tangible unconditional love. Receiving something home baked, is not only a rare thing for an inmate/resident, but also for many a reminder of something they might have experienced enjoying at some point in their lives.

Cookies are provided throughout a Kairos weekend to the participants and guests:

  • As snacks during tea breaks
  • Kairos Torch does a “cookie run” where a few cookies in bag decorated with Bible verses or a prayer are delivered to every juvenile resident in a facility
  • Forgiveness cookies for Kairos Inside

Posters or wall agape (A4 size)

Another visual tool to demonstrate to Kairos participants/guests of how other Kairos Communities, 4th day Communities and Christ followers are thinking of them over the weekend by hanging them up on the wall over a weekend. Typically, these A4 posters are colourful, have a bible verse or word of encouragement on them. When sent from one Kairos or 4th day Community to another, each team member of that community should sign the poster.

Kairos Outside weekends design a logo or symbol for their weekends. Wall displays with all the submitted “coloured-in” logos are made. It’s a wonderful way for all to be involved from young to old. Contact your closest agape coordinator to receive some logos/symbols for colouring-in (https://www.kairosministry.org.za).

Placemats

A wonderful and impactful way for very young Christ followers be involved in the Kairos ministry. A4 illustrations by children get used as placemats at a special dinner held on the Saturday evening of all Kairos programmes. The child’s name and age may appear on the placemat, but no surnames. These placemats are very touching for an offender, to be reminded that even a child that does not even know them, has taken the time to make a beautiful and colour placemat for them while also teaching children about the love of God for all persons.

Bibles and Bible bags

Towards the end of a Torch weekend, each participant is gifted with a Bible. Here in South Africa, we try our best to provide a Bible in the participants language of choice, so we welcome Bibles of different dialects. Bibles are personalised with the participants name on a Kairos Torch label, signed by the weekend leader and by the family table team members. The Bibles should be presented in a Bible bag.

Flowers

Kairos Outside has a very special Walking in Love or Flowers at Dawn ceremony on the weekend. Fresh flowers are needed to make this a meaningful, touching and beautiful step on the weekend.

Closing ceremonies

All Kairos programme weekends are completed with a Closing ceremony. You are invited to attend this ceremony. Please contact your agape coordinator of choice on the agape coordinator page (https://www.kairosministry.org.za) to receive information such as directions and entry protocols to attend a ceremony.

Green agape

Meal tickets – meals are an important aspect of any Kairos programme weekend. Our kitchen teams put special menus together to provide the participants with meals to remember. Meals are not elaborate, but certainly a treat from the standard facility food received on a daily basis. You can sponsor a meal for a participant on a weekend by purchasing a meal ticket. Meal tickets should be official Kairos meal tickets.

Financial contributions – any Kairos weekend has substantial expenses. From purchasing stationary supplies, to providing ingredients for fantastic meals and currently in the Covid-19 pandemic additional supplies are required to meet facility Covid-19 protocols, such as additional packaging for food. Any financial contributions are welcomed. Please contact your agape coordinator of choice on the agape coordinator page (https://www.kairosministry.org.za) to get information on how to make a contribution.

Personal Agape

Letters/notes

In both Kairos Inside and Kairos Torch all team members must hand write personalised letters to every participant on the weekend. Every letter should be unique and should not be a one size fits all. These personalised letters get placed into the participants Goody Bag and should express the love of God for them, providing a simple, profound message of love and hope. For Kairos Outside, personal letters to guests are optional, but should team members decide to do letters, every guest should receive a letter.

While letter writing for Kairos Inside and Torch is compulsory for all team members, we invite anyone that is not on team to write letters. Please contact your nearest agape coordinator to get information on how many participants will be on a weekend to make ensure everyone receives a handwritten letter (https://www.kairosministry.org.za).

Special letter

For the Kairos Outside programme, a letter to each guest is written to them by a special person in their lives. The Kairos Outside team makes contact with the special person that the guest has nominated on their application form as well as makes arrangements to collect the letter. These letters get placed into their Going Forth Packet.

Small gifts

Kairos Outside guests are blessed throughout the weekend with small gifts, also referred to in Kairos Outside talk as “warm fuzzies”. The gifts allow the guest to know that someone has made a special effort for them to enjoy over the weekend that they are on. Kairos Outside welcomes small gifts that can be shared with our guests over a weekend and can range from bookmarks to fridge magnets.

If you enjoy crafting small gifts and would like to be involved contact your agape coordinator of choice on the agape coordinator page (https://www.kairosministry.org.za) to get more information.