The Joseph Cardinal Bernardin

Archives and Records Center

The Archdiocese of Chicago’s Joseph Cardinal Bernardin Archives & Records Center is the official repository for the records of the Archdiocese of Chicago and the gateway to its past. As the institutional archives, its purpose is to identify, preserve, and make available archdiocesan records, which have long term value for local, national and international communities. These primary sources provide unique opportunities to examine our history, celebrate our unity as a Catholic community, and confidently face the future.


The purpose of this records management manual is to provide Archdiocese of Chicago parishes guidance and information to properly maintain and handle their records, for both short term and long term records. The manual includes information on understanding the importance of records management as an aspect of everyday utility, how to handle electronic records in today’s increasingly digital world, record keeping and filing practices, and information on record retention and disposition. A copy of the generic parish record retention schedule and commonly used forms can be found in the back of the manual, so they will be at your fingertips.

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