Once – a Company Director. Now – supporting a prison chaplain. Steve’s story. Posted on September 5, 2018September 20, 2018 by Steve First, I need to come clean. ‘Steve’ is not my real name – which I can’t reveal for reasons of security. It’s a funny world. As to ‘my story’ I didn’t see it coming. That, in my days after work, I’d be looking to do what I can to support a prison chaplain at a time when we seem to hear about the ever-increasing pressures on prison life almost weekly. Yet, perhaps I should not have been so surprised. For a dozen years or so I’d been ‘in prison’ four or five times a year as part of a team helping at chapel services. This was all during my very busy days as Director of a modest-size engineering business. Then came the time when this period of my life was now coming to an end, with a younger and very able colleague ready to take the reins. However, I could see it would be a bad idea to completely stop dead. I’d heard of those who had done so and not fared well. More than that, I could see the value of a planned a gradual withdrawal, initially with one or two days off in the week, plus some weekend days that were less crowded. But how should this extra time be spent? Looking back at what I’d enjoyed and was good at, those occasional visits into some of Her Majesty’s Prisons came to mind. More than that, they had given me an insight into how pressured a prison chaplain’s role can be, and how much value an extra pair of hands would be from time to time. Because of this I made contact with the chaplain at the prison near me, making the offer to do ‘whatever was needed’. A few weeks later found me simply helping out in the chapel services – handing out hymn sheets, switching on the lights, plugging in the microphones, praying with a couple of prisoners at the end. A couple of times, when they were short of a musician I stood in on that as well. It has been fulfilling, rewarding and worthwhile – leaving me with a sense that the more I could offer, the more opportunity I would have to do something really meaningful and appreciated. And so has come the next possible step. I don’t have to wind down activities – I can step up a gear! God has used my past to show what I can do in the present to make retirement more fulfilling for me and more valuable to others. Steve ‘Steve’ has to be anonymous due to security issues relating to HM Prisons. Do you have a story to share about using your past skills and experience in your after-work years? Do share it here or on our Facebook group.