About Us

The Diocese of Des Moines, created in 1911, serves people over a 12,446 square mile area in the southwestern quadrant of Iowa, including 23 counties.

The Diocese of Des Moines is comprised of:

  • 108,581 estimated Catholics with a total population of 876,785, according to the 2017 Kenedy report. We estimate we serve 130,000 when including unregistered Hispanic families.
  • 80 parishes
  • 17 schools
  • 60 active diocesan priests, and
  • 3 Catholic hospitals

Bishop Richard Pates is the shepherd of the diocese, having been appointed in 2008.

His priorities are:

  • Meeting the needs of newcomers, particularly Hispanic Catholics
  • Growing vocations, particularly to the priesthood
  • Encouraging people to understand and support evangelization
  • Serving youth and young adults, particularly millennials
  • Marriage and family life