The purpose of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend Archives is to collect, preserve, and make available for research the official records of the Diocese and those ancillary records which reflect the work of the Church within the Diocese. The official Diocesan records are defined as all recorded information regardless of media type or characteristics made or received and maintained by an agency, institution, or office in pursuance of its legal obligations or in the transaction of its business. The official agencies, institutions, and offices constitute the core collection of the Archives. Offices are the administrative units designed to assist the Bishop in the administration of the diocese and maintain a reportorial relationship to the Bishop. Agencies and institutions are considered those administrative units which perform specific functions and maintain an operational relationship to the Bishop. Such agencies and institutions may be operated by religious orders of men and/or women, but remain under the rubric of the Diocese. The parishes and diocesan elementary and high schools of the Diocese are considered an official organ of the Diocese. Those ancillary records of individuals and organizations engaged in work that is reflective of the work of the Catholic Church in the Diocese constitute the additional collections of the Archives. This includes, but is not limited to, records of individuals and/or organizations involved in an advisory role, such as legal counsel to the Diocese; as a unit supervised by the Diocese, such as religious orders of men and women; and a position of advocacy for the Diocese, such as the Indiana Catholic Conference, and lay societies such as the St. Vincent de Paul Society. Artifacts and other items of similar classification will be recommended for accession into the catalogue of the Cathedral Museum. Other collections that may be better suited in another repository will be recommended to such repository as needed, such as a collection that may be better suited to remain in South Bend at Saint Mary's College Archives, the Archives of the Indiana Province of the Congregation of Holy Cross or the University of Notre Dame's Archives.
Regular acquisitions to the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend Archives should include the following: