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The Prison Ministry Office oversees this volunteer-based ministry that responds to the spiritual needs of those who are incarcerated in Arkansas prisons and jails. It assures that spiritual support is provided by trained volunteers on a regular basis in the prison system in Arkansas.

This includes developing and implementing strategies for training and supervising volunteers and promoting the U.S. Catholic bishops’ documents and strategies regarding prisons, detention centers and the death penalty. The office also follows state legislation that affects Arkansas prisons and advocates for legislation that promotes fair treatment of prisoners.

Chaplains and CRAs

Chaplains and volunteers throughout the diocese minister to prisoners and provide them with free rosaries, Catholic Bibles and prayer books in English and in Spanish. Nearly 50 of the volunteers are Certified Religious Assistants (CRA). Chaplains and CRAs offer one-on-one in-prison spiritual counseling, sacramental services, Bible study, devotions as well as morning and evening prayers. We serve one federal prison and 14 state prisons and many county jails throughout the state. See Prison Ministries of Arkansas.