Rock & Roll Chaplain
Nick is a member of the Chaplaincy Team at HMP Buckley Hall in Rochdale, where several old pianos have been brought onto some of the wings.
Nick picks up the story...
During one of my usual visits I came across a prisoner randomly plinking out a tune on one of the pianos with one finger. I came alongside him and asked him if he would like me to show him the three basic chords of rock and roll. He said yes and so I taught him how to play easy versions of the chords G, C and D. I then went on to demonstrate how these chords go together in a simple twelve-bar sequence. Finally, I let my hair down a little and played some full-on rock and roll. Many prisoners were milling about getting their breakfast and before long several of the men and some prison officers gathered round to listen.
Then the prisoner with whom I was originally engaging went off to his cell momentarily and returned with his guitar to show me what he could play on it. I asked if I could have a go and said I would sing a song from the Psalms. I then gave everyone a rendition of my rock version of Psalm 3 “Arise O Lord.” This went down a storm and I finished to rapturous applause!
Now I want to give God all the glory for this. I am not in ministry to show off and make a name for myself but rather to share the gospel message. However, I do believe that God gave me this opportunity to sing His Word over the whole prison wing and to make a mark for His glory. This was a memorable moment in the lives of all those who heard. I seem to be gaining a reputation as the rock and roll chaplain and I thank God that He has given me a wonderful foundation to build upon in future prison visits as I seek to win more souls for Christ.