Dismas Ministry Blog

Mary, on this day when we honor all mothers, we turn to you. We thank the Lord whom you serve for the great gift of motherhood. Never has it been known that anyone who sought your intercession was left unaided by grace. Dear Mother, thank you for your “Yes” to the invitation of the angel which brought heaven to earth and changed human history. You opened yourself to God’s word and the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.

Dear mother, intercede for all of our mothers. Ask your Divine Son to give them the grace of surrendered love so that they could join with you in giving their own “Fiat.” May they find daily strength to say yes to the call to the sacrificial love- the very heart of the vocation of motherhood. May their love and witness be a source of great inspiration for all of us called to follow your Son.

On this Mothers day, Mother of the Word Incarnate, pray for us who have recourse to you…

In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Prayer from Catholic Online.

Virgin Mary

Inmate Art Show April 19th

An Exhibit of Artwork by the Incarcerated

Works of art done by men, women and youth incarcerated in detention centers, county jails and prisons throughout the United States. These pieces depict the humor, love, hurt and healing that have transpired in their lives.

This is a joint exhibit between The Cathedral of St. John, Dismas Ministry and Project Return in participation with the Historic Third Ward Association’s Gallery Night and Day, held Friday, April 19 and Saturday, April 20, 2013.

The inmate exhibit will be open Friday, April 19th from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at 802 N. Jackson Street, Milwaukee.

Click here to RSVP to our event on Facebook> 


As we begin Holy Week it is a happy coincidence (or no coincidence?) that Monday March 25 is the annual feast of Saint Dismas, the patron of our national Catholic prison ministry. The things that unfolded on the cross between this “good thief” as he has been called traditionally and Jesus is truly remarkable. The entire passage of Luke 23: 33-43 is so profound in meaning that centuries of reflection by many holy people have not plumbed the depths of it.

The words and melody of the great American southern hymn “What Wondrous Love Is This?” keeps running through my mind. It is wondrous that God went to such stupendous lengths to reveal to us the infinite, unconditional love that He has for us fumbling human beings.

If Dismas can make it into the kingdom as the saint of the last minute rescue, there is always hope for the likes of us too. That is why we call ourselves in this prison ministry business “messengers of hope.”

My hope for everyone is that hope abounds in your lives as Holy Week unfolds in all its wondrous love.

And thank God for the beautiful example of Pope Francis who will hold a Mass in their prison and wash the feet of youthful offenders in Rome on Holy Thursday. He could have been doing it in the splendor of St. Peter’s but he chose the prison setting instead.

Ron Zeilinger, Director

Pope Francis washes the feet of Christ in Prison - Join Dismas in Prayer

More inspiring testimonials from inmates on their spiritual journey. inmate testimonialinmate testimonialinmate testimonialinmate testimonials

Inmate testimonialinmate testimonial

This past Saturday, Dismas Ministry enjoyed having a table at the 2013 Men of Christ Conference in Milwaukee.

“Hello Men of Christ!” 

“Men of Christ is a group of Catholic lay men, from all walks of life, that have come together to make a difference in this world… and that difference, we believe, begins with faith filled men. Our vision is to create a conference that will evangelize, catechize, and unify Catholic men. The mission is to honor our Lord Jesus Christ by bringing Christian men together; forming a brotherhood that will empower each man to boldly live his Catholic faith.”

The Conference offered a morning and evening Mass (Evening Mass was led by Dismas Ministry Board Member, Auxiliary Bishop Donald J. Hying) and inspirational speakers including Joe Lombardi. Read more about the 2013 Conference here>

For Dismas Ministry, the conference was an opportunity to share our work with many Catholics who haven’t interacted with us before.  Ally, Dismas Ministry’s Assistant Director worked our table from 8 am to 5 pm, asking if people had heard of our ministry before. The majority of people learned about Dismas Ministry for the first time. They left with knowledge of our services, as well as easy ideas on how to get involved like joining our union of prayer.  It was a great day of interacting with others and generating interest in our ministry!

dismas ministry information table

Our Dismas Ministry table set up for the conference.

Lunch during Men of Christ Conference

Men at the Conference join Ally for Lunch at Dismas Ministry Table.