Essential Three  (Safe Environment)

The Safe Environment Office of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, and thus Divine Mercy, has one goal – providing safe environments for all children and vulnerable adults.  In light of this, the Archdiocese has mandated three requirements for all volunteers who have regular or unsupervised contact with children and/or vulnerable adults:


1.   Background Checks  

A criminal background check is now required to be run every three years. Certain criminal convictions may prevent volunteer applicants from serving in some capacities. Youth (13-17) have to submit two reference letters in lieu of an adult background check. 

Driver’s Information Form: Whenever an adult volunteer wishes to drive others as part of their responsibilities, the adult must complete or provide:

  • Motor vehicle records background check

  • A current Driver's Information Form

  • A copy of their driver’s License

Credit Check: If the volunteer or employee will be handling money in the amount of $250 or more, you will be required to also have a credit check run. Simply answer YES to the question that asks if you will be handling this amount of money and a credit check will automatically be run. 



2. VIRTUS - Protecting God's Children for Adults: Safe Environment Training

A VIRTUS training session is a three hour awareness session which better equips adults to protect children in the world around them. This is a live training session which only needs to be taken once; however, every three years after having VIRTUS training, you will be asked to view a video refresher session called Keeping the Promise Alive. This session will be done online.


3.    Volunteer's Code of Conduct

The Archdiocesan Volunteers' Code of Pastoral Conduct establishes standards of ministerial behavior and appropriate boundaries for volunteers. These are signed online every 3 years. In addition to electronically signing the Code of Conduct, we ask you to view a video called the Code of Conduct Training video. We also ask you to take a brief tutorial called Reporting Suspected Child Abuse, which will inform you about what to do in the case where you might suspect some abuse going on. 


Age Summary

Ages 13-17: Two reference letters & Youth Code of Conduct.

Ages 18 & older:  Background Check, Adult Code of Conduct, & VIRTUS Training Session. 


Click the applicable link in the right column to begin!


Attention:  If it has been more than three years since you had your Virtus training or your background check, you must renew in order to be considered for any volunteer activity. 


If you have any questions about the status of your Essential Three, please contact the staff liaison for the department you work in.