Best Practices for B90 in Prision Ministry

Summary: Talk about an audience hungry for truth and hungry for Christian community! B90 groups have made a huge difference not only to prisoners, but especially to the prisons where they thrive. These notes will help you help men and women find spiritual freedom – even if they live behind physical bars.

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The Bible in 90 Days has been exceptionally well received by Prison Fellowship for over five years in several states. We have seen very positive results from using The Bible in 90 Days within the faith-based dorms in the prisons of Texas. In addition to the individual spiritual growth that comes from reading the Bible from cover to cover in only 90 days, we have seen that the use of the materials has produced a tremendous sense of community among the participants. Many inmates have invited family and friends on the outside to read along with them, thus bringing them closer to those on the outside. Below are some of the “Best Practices” we have observed when using the materials in prison ministry:

  • Always remember that each prison is unique; therefore, work closely with both the chaplain and warden when implementing the materials.
  • The small groups are the key to the success of B90 in prisons. Ask the chaplain to select qualified inmates to serve as facilitators of groups. Let facilitators choose co-facilitators from within their group. Spend some time training the facilitators emphasizing that they are to facilitate discussion, not be a teacher. Allocate as much time as possible to the small groups (at least 45 minutes). The leaders are very comfortable using the questions in the Participants Guide. You don’t need to add to this. I have had many of the groups meet between the large group sessions for prayer and to support one another.
  • Always be yourself, although it may not be adequate from your perspective. The inmates are very flexible and appreciative of the opportunity to read God’s Word.
  • Don’t miss a week. Keep on schedule. Work with the chaplain if any conflicts develop within a group.
  • Your role as leader is to set the tone. Be continually positive and encouraging. Remind them frequently that B90 is a Bible reading class, and not a Bible study. They are to focus on the big picture and the unity of the Bible, not on all the specific questions they might have from a particular passage. The best preparation for the leader is to participate yourself by reading along with the inmates. Share what you are learning as you read the Bible with them. Preview the DVD for each session choosing the one that best fits your situation. Inmates have responded well to Jack Modesett’s presentations.
  • Work with the chaplain to plan a celebration event at the end of the class which might include a meal, testimonies from inmates and a presentation of a certificate of completion.

What’s Next?

Summary: You may not know it yet, but B90 is part of a bigger picture. Widen your focus by reading this article and you’ll see our grand scope.

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A common question after finishing The Bible in 90 Days is “What’s next?”

Dig Deeper with BNEXT Bible Studies

Now that you have read the Bible cover to cover and have a basic understanding, wouldn’t it be great to dig deeper and mine it in study. Our BNEXT Bible Studies are a great way to peel back a layer and take a closer look at God’s ways and works. We suggest you start in Genesis with the In The Beginning study. Over time and with discipline, you can work all the way through to Revelation with the Brighten Your Light study.

Talk to your church leadership about launching a BNEXT study group, or rejoin with your B90 classmates at your home and jump right back in — just a little deeper! These studies can be purchased for individual study, but they work best with groups (and are available with affordable, reproducible pricing)!

Keep Reading

You have many options, and here are a few popular suggestions. And, by the way, congratulations on finishing your reading! You’ve established a daily reading habit, so… keep reading. However, just as a marathon runner only works out lightly for a few days after a marathon, you might choose to reduce your daily reading load for a time. Try one or more of the following:

  • Set aside time each day to re-read portions of the Bible that intrigued you during your 90-day journey. If you have a Bible commentary, refer to it as you read. If you lack a Bible commentary, visit a nearby Christian bookstore to find one, or ask your church staff or class leader to recommend one.
  • Read one chapter of Proverbs a day for a month. There are 31 chapters, so you’ll finish in a month.
  • Wait a month, then re-read the entire Bible from cover to cover in 90 days. If you enjoyed the first journey, there’s a good chance you’ll enjoy the second even more. By making yourself wait a month, your anticipation and enthusiasm may build. If it doesn’t, then re-reading probably isn’t the best next step for you right now. If you find yourself dreading the re-read rather than expectantly anticipating it, then do something else.
  • Enroll in another class.
  • Spread the word: Share your experience with friends, family, co-workers, and others in personal conversations in within your online social network.
  • Host another Bible in 90 Days reading group.

Thank you for faithfully reading the entire Bible. If your life has been changed by the experience, we’d love to hear how. Please share your story on our Testimonials page.