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The Many Hats Worn by Tim Horne
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By Mike Toth



Matthew 25: 37-40: 37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’


Community chaplain Tim Horne is a man of several hats, but one heart. Whether he is acting in his role with New Life Prison Ministry, Dismas Fellowship, or as the Faith Community Re-integration Project Coordinator (FCRPC) for Corrections Canada Horne is living Jesus’ admonition to reach the imprisoned. Horne was introduced to New Life Prison Ministry in 1983 through founders Gerrit and Susan Blok while he was working at a halfway house for provincial prisoners. This is his second stint with NLPM, and is currently the Director of Aftercare for that ministry.



This role directly dovetails with his work with the Dismas Fellowship here in London. Named for the penitent thief on the cross, Horne and Eileen Henderson of the Mennonite Central Committee established the local chapter with the mandate to support men and women who have been released from incarceration to reintegrate into society. Though many who attend Dismas meetings at London First Church of the Nazarene may not be ready for church attendance, or have much faith at all, many have used Dismas as their church or as a stepping-stone before becoming a part of a church community.

Horne’s newest hat, as FCRPC for London is a prison aftercare program funded by Correctional Services of Canada. In recognition of the fact that faith communities can play a pivotal role in the success of a parolees release, he is responsible for meeting with the recently released in three London halfway houses.

Horne does an assessment of what a parolee is looking for with regard to their faith and works to build some trust. If a client has a specific church or faith group in mind he will approach the pastor or leader directly and help to integrate them into that community. If there is no preference he will normally connect with a faith community he has worked successfully with before. Some London churches have been quite welcoming to the ex-prisoners, even starting support groups to help solidify their place in the fellowships. Horne’s holistic approach to supporting the men and women includes supporting them in connecting with agencies where they can get help with obtaining identification, housing, addiction services, even with the food bank, leading to effectively tripling his program work hours.

“I believe in a God who gets His hands dirty, who never gives up,” Horne says of his motivation to serve. “If the church can’t help them, who can? That is our mandate!”

Throughout his 30+ years of ministering to the imprisoned both during and after their incarceration Horne remains encouraged by the willingness of the body of Christ to reach out. Many more churches and individuals are needed to adequately meet the needs of those leaving incarceration. If you or your church is interested in starting a Matthew 25 type of ministry he would be thrilled to help train groups to reach these men and women. You can contact Tim at timhorne@mcco.ca.