Rehabilitation and restoration must include the spiritual dimension of healing and hope.

— USCCB, Responsibility, Rehabilitation, and Restoration: A Catholic Perspective on Crime and Criminal Justice (2000)

The Catholic Conference of Illinois coordinates the Illinois Catholic Prison and Jail Ministry Network, which is made up of clergy and laity from each diocese who minister to prisoners and inmates of state, federal and local institutions. The Network is organized as a practical response to Church teachings and the call of our bishops.

Marilou Gervacio serves as the CCI staff member for the Illinois Catholic Prison and Jail Ministry Network.

Diocesan representatives include the following:


Dr. MaryClare Birmingham
Phone: (773) 247-0070


Mr. Lou Slapshak
Phone: (618) 234-8334


Deacon Joe LaHood


Rev. Howard Barch


Rev. Dan Willenborg
Phone: (217) 532-5288


Catholic Chaplain Training Program

CCI worked with faculty at Lewis University in Romeoville to create a Catholic prison and jail chaplain training program. This 15-month, credit-worthy program consists of online courses and occasional two-day workshops. Read this brochure to learn more. Contact Dr. Christie Billups at Lewis University at (815) 836-5829 or for more information.


State prisons, state youth centers and federal prisons by diocese

Archdiocese of Chicago

State youth center

IYC Chicago

Diocese of Belleville

Diocese of Joliet

State prison

Stateville Correctional Center

State youth centers

IYC Warrenville

Diocese of Peoria

Diocese of Rockford

State prisons

Dixon Correctional Center

State youth center

IYC St. Charles

Diocese of Springfield-in-Illinois