Working as a chaplain to inmates takes a unique type of patience and understanding. Now, the man who has filled the chaplain position at the Elkhart County jail is retiring after 28 years on the job.
According to the Elkhart Truth, Mike Kupke spent nearly three decades counseling the more than 650 inmates inside the county jail.
Over Kupke’s service the Elkhart County Chaplaincy Program has grown and expanded. About 20 volunteer chaplain assistants and over 700 volunteers help out at the hundreds of church services and Bible Studies sessions held at the jail each month.
As Chaplain, Kupke was in charge of overseeing every person and event for the program, making sure that any inmate who requested his service was helped in some capacity.
Rick Lambright, president of the Elkhart county Chaplaincy Advisory Board says that Kupke not stop at helping inmates. According to Lambright, he served as a counselor and friend to the correctional officers at the jail as well.
The Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department held a special open house at the Law Enforcement Center in Elkhart on Sunday to honor Kupke’s work.