Kyuzo Miyaishi—known throughout South Carolina as “Frankie San”—spent 40 years in the state’s maximum security prison as a chaplain. One of the wardens he served under purportedly said, “I was the warden but Frankie ran the prison.”
|“Frankie San,” Kyuzo Miyaishi, presents a workshop on prison ministry at a South Carolina Global Mission Event.|
Born in Japan in 1929 and raised Buddhist, Frankie San converted to Christianity after World War II. He came to South Carolina and enrolled at Lutheran Southern Seminary
, Columbia, graduating in 1966. He was ordained in 1973. While a student, he worked at a hamburger joint where he watched buses from the department of correction pass by. Frankie San bowed and waved at the passengers. And the prisoners waved back.
He saw this as a sign that God was calling him to minister to the prisoners at South Carolina’s infamous Central Correctional Institute, said his friend Charles B. Dawkins, a retired ELCA
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