Start a Prison Bible Study
Perhaps you feel you are hearing the call of God to take His Word inside prison walls and fences by starting a prison Bible study. CBS InPrison & Beyond classes may be started in various ways – the one essential element is that they be God-directed. We suggest the following:
- Pray! The first and foremost step in starting a new prison Bible study class is to determine God’s will. .
- Contact CBS InPrison & Beyond to learn more about our studies and how we operate.
- After the Lord directs, and you’ve received the go-ahead and support from CBS InPrison & Beyond, you’ll approach the institution administration (chaplain, volunteer coordinator, program director, warden) and request a 1.5 hour time slot for a meeting.
- If permission is granted by the institution, we will come to you to train you.
- Then, watch God and His Word transform the hearts and lives of men and women!
Our relationship with prison authorities
We believe that volunteers going into institutions to lead Bible studies are guests in that institution, just as they would be guests in anyone’s home. The administration of the institution is the authority in that institution and they – and all of their rules, procedures, and practices – should be respected at all times. InPrison CBS volunteers must comply with all training and behavioral requirements specified by the institutional administration.
Relationships with prison administration should be established through the correct channels. Often the InPrison CBS Teaching Director works with a chaplain; however, it could be with an activities director, program director, volunteer coordinator, jailer, or warden.
Leadership Roles for a prison Bible study class.
Community Bible Study InPrison & Beyond is a team ministry. The leader of the team is the Teaching Director (TD). The Teaching Director is the primary teacher, the official liaison with the institution’s administration, the link to CBS, and the shepherd of his/her team.
- Every prison bible study class should have an Associate Teaching Director (ATD) to support and substitute for the Teaching Director.
- The Prayer Leader holds up the class and all the members in prayer.
- The Worship Leader plans and leads the opening worship.
- The Class Administrator prepares and distributes copies of the lessons and keeps any records desired or required by the institution.
- The Core Facilitator is a key position. They facilitate, (not teach) the informal discussion of the lesson. Ideally the Core Facilitators are inmates ff the institution will allows. If the institution will not allow inmates to fill this role then “outside” volunteers must fill this role.
- Not all of the leadership roles must be filled for a successful class. Small classes or a lack of volunteers may lead to a class with just two or three “outside” leaders. In such cases roles are combined.