Bureau institutions offer a wide range of religious programs to inmates. Staff Chaplain(s) of specific faiths are available, as well as contract and volunteer representatives of other faiths. The religious diet program, holiday observances and other worship activities are coordinated through the Chaplain’s office. Further information about these programs is available in the orientation program and from the Chaplain(s).
Inmates on callout and/or a roster to attend Religious Services Programs must be dressed in the proper attire (khakis or Food Service whites) with their shirts tucked into their pants. Inmates must also bring their commissary cards to assist the Chaplains in rapidly checking in participants for religious services. Inmates are reminded that the Chaplains are responsible for inmate accountability. Therefore, all inmates on callout/roster are expected to appear at the chapel or have their detail supervisors call to have their absences excused.
Speech or any other forms of communication that promotes violence or terrorism, denigrates others, or challenges the authority of the Bureau of Prisons will result in cancellation of the religious program at which it occurs.
The Chapel schedule is intended to provide each faith group one worship program and one educational program, or the equivalent in cases where this is not practically possible. Religious volunteers may be used to supplement the basic Chapel schedule when they are available. Rescheduling of cancelled programs is not guaranteed.
Inmates participating in the Religious Diet (“Common Fare”) program are expected to refrain from eating main line and order only those commissary items which are religiously certified. Unauthorized possession of food which should have been consumed in the dining hall may result in being cited for a violation of the Religious Diet program. Violations may incur a period of suspension from the program, ranging from up to thirty days for the first violation to a full 365 days for subsequent violations. All inmates who have business related to Common Fare may be placed on callout, ordinarily on Thursdays, for resolution. This includes initial program applicants, appeals for program suspension, and requests for reinstatement following expiration of the suspension period.
Inmates of all faith groups and creeds may apply for participation in the faith-based Threshold program. This program takes six months to complete. Also, FCI inmates interested in the 18-month Life Connections program, which will require transfer to another institution, should ask the Chaplains for the date of the next orientation and application session.