Using the Web
A tip from one of our Chaplains: I have Google Search set to troll the Internet every day for all articles with the words “chaplain” in them. Almost every day my Google Search surfaces job opportunities for chaplains.
- Go to www.google.com
- In the top left hand corner, you’ll see the options “Web, Images…More.”
- Click on “More”
- Click on “Even More”
- Scroll down to “Alerts” and select it
- Type “chaplain” into the search query
- Type your email address in the appropriate box
- Finish by clicking on “Create Alert”
I recommend using “chaplain” rather than “chaplain job” or “chaplain position.” “Chaplain” captures many more articles on the web than a job seeker needs, but “chaplain position” could miss an ad for “chaplain job.” Using a very general term captures everything. The articles returned also help you learn what’s going on out in the greater world of the chaplaincy.”
We often receive emails and telephone calls from Teaching Elders who want to know how a person can learn of and apply for Civilian Chaplain Opportunities. I thought it might be helpful to put an answer in writing here, in case YOU might be asking that question of yourself right now.
First of all, which field do you believe the Lord might be calling you to, such as:
Addiction Treatment Centers
Corrections Facilities (Prisons and Jails)
Law Enforcement Chaplaincy
Fire Department Chaplaincy
Veterans Administration Hospitals
Contract Chaplain Services
Secondly, are looking for a paid position, or a volunteer one?
If you are looking for a paid position, are you willing to relocate?
Thirdly, do you have the training and experience that these ministries might require?
If you are looking for a volunteer Civilian Chaplain position, I suggest you contact the Human Resource departments or Chaplain Ministries departments for the institutions within your local “field” above, and see if they have existing Chaplain Programs that you can apply for. You would probably be surprised to learn that there are already programs out there. If they DON’T have a chaplain program already, perhaps you can submit a proposal to them to start one. We can put you in touch with some men who are doing volunteer chaplaincy in their communities in your “field” of preference. They may be able to help you. This is a great way to extend your pulpit ministry beyond your church members, and into your community, or to spend the “second half” of your life if you are retired.
If you are looking for a paid position, and you are not willing to relocate, I suggest you follow the guidelines above for volunteer chaplaincy, only you, of course, will be asking about paid positions. If you are willing to relocate for a position, then the fields of opportunity increase for you dramatically.
There are websites that list Chaplain Positions (I just Googled “Employment Christian” and in two minutes found MinistriesEmployment.com, clicked on Health Care, and saw an opening for a Chaplain at a large hospital in Pensacola, Florida. This is not a recommendation for this site (I know nothing about it); it only shows that the internet IS a viable way to search for paid Chaplain Ministry openings).
Many, if not most, Civilian Chaplain Employers will want you to have at least SOME Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) over and above your theological credentials. I suggest you learn what those are about, and where they may be acquired by checking out the following links on our Civilian Chaplain webpage at:
Board Certification: APC (Association of Professional Chaplains):
Continuing Professional Education (CPE) available at:
- ACPE (The Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc. ) www.acpe.edu
- CPSP (College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy www.cpsp.org
- AAPC (American Association of Pastoral Counselors)www.aapc.org
- COMISS (Council on Ministry in Specialized Settings)www.comissnetwork.org
- National VA Chaplain Center www1.va.gov/chaplain
- Federal Bureau of Prisons www.bop.gov