NASHVILLE, Tenn.––The Tennessee board of Disciple Bible Outreach Ministries (DBOM), meeting April 14 at the office of the General Commission on United Methodist Men, elected officers for 2014-15.

The ministry, which includes representatives from the Tennessee, Memphis and Holston annual conferences, provide DISCIPLE Bible study in Tennessee state prisons.

Randy Horick, a Nashville business owner, was elected as the board’s new president. The Rev. Richard Peck, editor of United Methodist Men magazine, will serve as vice-president. Davis Turner, vice president and general counsel to Nashville-based Vanguard Health Systems, will serve as secretary; and the Rev. Jason Brock, a staff member of the Tennessee Annual Conference, was selected as the organization’s treasurer.

“For those of us who have been involved in prison ministry, studying the Bible in community with incarcerated persons is at once a passion, a powerful expression of the Good News, and an experience that changes our lives,” said Horick, whose small business provides writing communication services. “As many testimonies bear out, DISCIPLE is often life-changing for participants behind bars.”

The prison ministry was begun in North Carolina by the Rev. Mark Hicks, who serves as president of the national ministry. Individual chapters are also active in Virginia, Louisiana, Illinois and Tennessee.

The ministries in the five states are supported by nine annual conferences and United Methodist Men. Gil Hanke, top staff executive of the General Commission on United Methodist Men, serves on the national board.

DBOM relies on volunteers — both pastors and laypersons who have received special training in facilitating the study in prisons. There are DISCIPLE studies in three Tennessee prisons. The group recently received permission to begin a study in a fourth facility.

“Our goal is to establish a presence in every correctional facility in this state,” Horick said. “With a larger inmate population in the United States than in any other developed nation, we have an incredible number of brothers and sisters who need to hear that they are part of the beloved community and who want to embark on a walk in faith, if only they have someone to come walk with them. We aim to make a systematic effort to find more volunteers across Tennessee who will respond.”

The DISCIPLE series has become one of the most powerful tools for personal transformation and local church growth in the United Methodist Church. Today millions of persons from a variety of Christian denominations have participated in DISCIPLE Bible Study. In addition to the DISCIPLE studies, DBOM offers Rings of Fellowship, a curriculum specially designed for youth.

For information, visit the http://disciplebibleoutreach.orgwebsite.

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