Catholic Prison Ministries Coalition Formation and Certification 2021 Offerings

The Intensive Pathway is in response to an urgent critical need expressed by the Catholic Prison Ministries Coalition (CPMC). This need is growing as the number of incarcerated persons continues to stretch the limits of institutions and thus add to the dehumanizing and overcrowding stresses for inmates and the challenges for the personnel who work here.

Catholic Prison Ministries Coalition Sponsored by the National Association of Catholic Chaplains

Intensive Pathway Requirements: (minimum of 80 hours of Pastoral Care Program formation)

  • Academic preparation
    • 20 hours of continuing education in pastoral theology, catechesis, evangelization related to the specific ministry chosen (for example, catechesis, bible study, extraordinary minister of eucharist, etc.)
  • Clinical preparation
    • 1 CPE-like clinical/formation experience (Pastoral Care Formation @ least 80 hours) along with clinical setting experience in criminal justice-related setting(s) (hours in jail/prisons/detention centers, reentry, families of prisoners, parish-based restorative justice work)
  • Ministry experience
    • One year’s ministerial experience, a portion in a correctional setting.
    • At least 24 hours of mentoring in multiple settings aimed to help discern the best setting for the gifts brought to the ministry.
  • Endorsements
    • Local ordinary / or his delegate such as a pastor
    • Clinical Supervisor/Mentor
    • A person from a ministerial/correctional setting


  • To enhance the pastoral care skills of employees and volunteers who are already involved in ministry to the incarcerated and family members, to correctional staff, to those who are in re-entry, and to the persons whose lives are impacted by incidents of harm.
  • To educate and prepare for credentialing of jail and prison ministers.
  • To pilot an extended program, following the methodology, goals, and objectives for a Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) accredited unit, and to move toward Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE) accreditation, specializing in all levels of correctional ministry.


  • This program will be held on Wednesdays, starting May 12, 2021, through February 23, 2022, and consist of two 4-hour meetings monthly.


  • Participants meet for 4 hours every 2 weeks for 10 consecutive months. (Data and times to be determined).


  • Readings on each theme will be done ahead of time and discussed in class.

Who can apply? What do I need?

  • Be an employee or volunteer who is actively involved in jail and prison ministry.
  • An endorsement by an individual’s Diocesan Office is required.
  • College degree preferred, but not required.
  • Completion of ministry foundational/introductory program and listed online CPMC webinars.
  • Be a Volunteer Ministry, Professional Ministry, or Student member of NACC.
  • Payment of $75 per month.
  • Complete program application. (Applications will be accepted until March 15th or until all positions are filled. Class size will be limited to 16 participants.)