Touring New Zealand prisons with encouraging gospel concerts, Nicky Moran completed her first full nationwide prison tour during September and October 2016 with fifty-four concerts. Led by the Lord, and leaving her family and nursing job behind for a month, Nicky went into all the prisons to sing, share her testimony, and call those in prison back to the Lord.
With four regional tours since 2015, Nicky has ‘learned the ropes,’ and plays covers and original songs on electric piano, acoustic guitar, and a looper—taking in her own sound system into every prison. “There’s a lot of set up and pack down, but my roadies are the chaplains, prison staff, and many times the prisoners themselves. Some even climb into the van to unload and reload the gear with me.”
Nicky eagerly enters the prisons to find many souls hungry for encouragement. The message is love. “God loved us first, and he’s calling us to love him back,” she says. Nicky dares prisoners to trust God, and ask him for good things such as friendship and help to forgive those who have hurt them, bringing healing and change of heart and behaviour. She preaches, “Show a little love; share a little; give a little; show some kindness.”
On the latest tour, after hearing the stories and songs, a young prisoner testified to his group that he had been hurt by someone close to him, but could now forgive as he felt God helping him to do so. The one who had caused offence apologised, they embraced and cried together, and the whole unit was impacted by the response. Then there was prayer for a busted ankle with lots of ‘amens.’
In every prison, something incredible happens: God moves, and prisoners and staff laugh, cry, and sing. Some look stunned and appear so quiet before telling Nicky and the chaplains how they were moved.
Prisoners seek to help the ministry efforts as they want other prisoners to also have lasting change impact their lives, and will purchase albums if permitted. Recently, God has provided a replacement van for Nicky with contributions from supporters in the public. Life Plus Trust, from HamSouth Baptist Church, are continuing to sponsor transport costs as well as an assistant to help organise prison entries—this is a complicated business! Nicky had female drivers for the South Island leg, but toured all North Island prisons alone. She is generally billeted around the country, and ministers in the homes and places she stops. She appreciates all the prayer support and encouragement, as well as the financial and practical help that people give her, and maintains that God receives all the glory.
All prisons have invited Nicky back with enthusiasm from staff, chaplains, and prisoners. She plans to continue to tour annually from September to October.