Paul Hurley

For over five years, Paul has conducted a religious service every Tuesday night for prisoners at the Gretna jail in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. Paulís "church" is a windowless room in the prison with no guards present at the service. His "congregation" consists of individuals awaiting trial as well as some who have already been convicted of crimes as serious as murder. None are eligible for bail. Paul prepares the service himself, which lasts between an hour and an hour and a half. In addition to readings, psalms and canticles, Paul distributes hosts consecrated by a retired priest. Frequently, there are two services back-to-back, which consume almost three hours, not counting Paulís preparation and travel time.

In addition, for almost three years, Paul conducted a similar service on Sunday mornings at a minimum security State juvenile facility which housed adolescent males. Because of a reorganization within the juvenile department, the juveniles are no longer housed in a single facility and a Sunday service is no longer an option.

In addition to his work with inmates, Paul is a Lector and a Eucharistic Minister at his church, and visits sick parishioners.

Finally, Paul serves on the Jefferson Parish Economic Development Commission, which has major responsibilities since Hurricane Katrina destroyed so much of New Orleans.