Recognizing Fathers & Father Figures: A Conversation with Rafael Cantu from Prison Fellowship



Father’s Day is upon us and for many people it is a time to do what they do so often: pick up the phone and call the father figure in their life. For those incarcerated, along with their family and friends, communication—especially on Father’s Day—has a deeper impact and resonates differently. 

We spoke to Rafael Cantu, director of corporate partnerships at Prison Fellowship, about what communication truly means to incarcerated individuals and their loved ones, particularly around Father’s Day. As a formerly incarcerated individual himself, his words and experience shed light on a father’s perspective. 

Here is what Rafael had to say:

Kids change your life. The interaction—a letter, a phone call—was something I looked forward to immensely. There was joy in hearing my children’s voice and pain of having to get off the call, but having a connection to the ones closest to my heart gave me the strength to make it another day. 

Having an open line of communication helped me maintain a relationship with my kids and fully understand the impact of being a good—or bad—father has on children. The need to connect is not just on Father’s Day—it is every day, but these conversations were a stark reminder of the importance of being a father.  

Now that I am out, Father’s Day is such a wonderful time. It is even more special, and I am grateful for the gift of being a dad.  

I am thankful for the phone calls that allowed me to share my love with my kids. It is important for children that have a parent in prison know that their dad loves them.

Reach out to your loved one and extend your support!

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