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Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry

Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry

Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry (OCPM) is an agency of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States. For Orthodox Christians who have been arrested for crimes, OCPM helps them return to the Faith, offering forgiveness and reconciliation with Christ. For both Orthodox and non-Orthodox alike, OCPM provides spiritual care, enabling prisoners to find hope and purpose in their lives.

The correspondence ministry of OCPM with letters are known as a “visit-by-mail.”
Our staff take the time to personally respond to every letter sent to them by a prisoner. OCPM processes more than 90,000 pieces of mail each year. We also send pamphlets, icon cards, books, Bibles, and study courses.
OCPM contacts a prisoner by mail, on average, 120 times per year.
Prisons have stringent rules for mail due to the risk of contraband, which is mostly street drugs. All of OCPM’s materials adhere to those prison mail guidelines.

Prison ministry is a unique form of ministry that requires specialized training. For more than 30 years, OCPM has trained clergy and laity with tools and resources in how to have a vital parish-based ministry. We have also shown parishes how they can best help the former prisoner who is returning to the community.

Their prison chaplains and speakers have great experience in prisons at every security level. They are available for one-on-one coaching for clergy, retreats, and training sessions.
OCPM trains clergy and laity in prison ministry. They are available for phone consultations or in-person seminars and workshops.
OCPM has training resources for priests and lay people on how to start a prison ministry. Their resources are supported by expert staff and volunteers with decades of prison ministry experience.

About Us

Orthodox Christian Prison Ministry (OCPM) proclaims the love of Christ to men and women who are incarcerated. We do this by applying the teachings of the Orthodox Faith to correspond with thousands of prisoners, providing them personalized spiritual care, Bibles, books, icons, catechism, and study courses. For those wishing to live an Orthodox way of life, we advocate on their behalf for correctional facilities around the country to recognize the Orthodox faith, so that priests can enter prison facilities and administer the Sacraments.

As the national prison ministry of the Orthodox Church, we provide resources and training to local parishes and clergy, enabling them to offer local solutions and fulfill Christ’s command to visit Him in prison. As a result, families are reunited, marriages are healed, and thousands of incarcerated men and women have a new sense of peace and restored order in their lives.


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