died Sat., Feb 21.
Arnold was a part of Kairos, a Christian ministry brought into San Quentin and other prisons all over the world by volunteers and residents serving to share their love of Christ.
“I’ve known Brian since group 42,” inmate Clinton Martin said. “Brian taught me how to be a man and Christian and be both together.”
Martin added that Arnold loved to play harmless practical jokes on his friends.
“Brian would tell people to do things, knowing they’d be uncomfortable doing them, and he’d sit back and laugh. He was a jokester. It’s a bittersweet day. I’m sad he’s no longer with us, but there’s no doubt, he’s in heaven with the Father right now.”
“The three best words to describe Brian,” Martin said, “are faith, beauty and love.”
Karios, a mix of interdenominational Christians, is organized with well-trained teams of men and women from Christian communities surrounding San Quentin. They present a three-day weekend, described as a short course in Christianity. Chaplains within San Quentin select up to 42 inmates to attend.
Inmate Kimani Randall said that he first met Arnold in Kairos group 39.
“He was a wonderful individual,” Randall said. “He was down to earth, very loving authentic. That’s what gravitated me to him the most,” adding, “He was funny. He kept me laughing. I don’t do too much laughing, but he kept me laughing and brought joy to my day. Whenever I went to a reunion I looked forward to seeing him.”
Kairos members, outside and inside San Quentin, continue to gather for monthly reunions. In addition to inside weekends, Kairos provides “Kairos Outside” weekends for wives, girlfriends, daughters and sisters of incarcerated men and “Torch” weekends for youth offenders.
Randall said the best way to describe Arnold is that he was “caring, non-judgmental and funny.”
“Brian was very intelligent and gifted,” Kairos volunteer Ronald Lew said. “He would give himself to anyone who was ready. He showed me how a person should act.”
“Brian taught me many lessons in loving and letting go,” Lew said. “He also corrected me in my thinking and understanding in how I viewed things in my little world.”
He is survived by his wife, Alison Arnold; son Joe Hughes; his brother, Jerere Arnold and his wife, Denise; nephews Daniel Arnold and Ronnie Arnold; nieces Tangina Sarnold, Jessica Borberg, Sena, Cara and Jordan Hughes; and his father-in-law Lawrence Hughes.