Army Chaplain

Spread faith as an Army Chaplain.

Care for the spiritual, moral, and emotional well-being of the Army—and make it stronger from the inside out.

A male Field Chaplain talking to a Soldier outside during the day

Provide support and motivation.

Nurture the soul of the Army. As an Army Chaplain, you’ll be a commissioned Officer who gives emotional guidance to Soldiers and their families as a spiritual counselor. Army Chaplains adopt innovative approaches to care by recognizing the physical, mental, and spiritual challenges Soldiers face every day.

An Army Chaplain stands in front of seated Army members, all in uniform

Take on challenging work.

Help Soldiers in the Army build inner resilience and support Army leaders as they manage difficult decisions surrounding the future of our country.

Promote religious diversity.

Observe the distinct doctrines of your faith while honoring other denominations and ensuring the right for others to observe their own.

Find your spiritual calling.

Enjoy the satisfaction of making a difference in the lives of Soldiers and their loved ones, all while performing a vital service for your country.

Requirements to become an Army Chaplain

There are certain requirements and steps you’ll need to take to become part of the U.S. Army Chaplain Corps, regardless of where you are on your journey.

  • Be at least 17 but under 31 in the year of commissioning as an Officer

  • Be medically and physically fit

  • Be a U.S. citizen by the time you commission as an Officer

  • Be a college graduate by the time you’re commissioned as an Officer

  • Complete a background check, questionnaire, and interview, and provide the required documentation for a security clearance 

How Army Chaplains make a difference

Impact each Army unit.

Chaplains serve almost every type of unit in the Army, from infantry and intelligence to hospitals and community ministries.

  • Provide marriage and family counseling
  • Serve at medical facilities, correctional facilities, or combat hospitals
  • Become an instructor at one of several Officer service schools
  • Get advanced training for staffing and managing Chaplaincy-related personnel

Serve part time across the country.

As a Chaplain in the Army Reserve or Army National Guard, you’ll serve part time in support of your community, state, and country. You’ll be able to pursue a civilian ministry while you serve and train near home.

Be a source of support.

Support the goals of Army Chaplains as an enlisted Soldier. Religious Affairs Specialists are relied on to coordinate religious programs and worship services on behalf of Army Chaplains.


If you’re a ministry student who wants to get a head start on a career in Army Chaplaincy while still in school, consider the Chaplain Candidate Program (CCP). You’ll make a real impact on the lives of Soldiers and their families, along with enjoying the benefits of an Officer and receiving up to 100% of tuition costs.

An Army Chaplain standing in a house of worship


Find out more about becoming a Soldier and if a career in the Army is right for you.

Common questions about Army Chaplains.

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Do Army Chaplains have to go to Basic Training?

As an Army Chaplain, you won’t participate in the Basic Training that enlisted Soldiers complete. Instead, you’ll attend the Chaplain Basic Officer Leader Course (CHBOLC), a required training course that focuses on your professional, physical, academic, and spiritual growth as a military Chaplain. 

Do Army Chaplains have to pass a fitness test?

Yes, you must meet Army height and weight standards, and pass the Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT).

Do Army Chaplains have to fight?

No. Army Chaplains are not issued weapons and are not allowed to engage in combat. During times of combat, they are protected by Religious Affairs Specialists.

What religions are included in the Army Chaplaincy?

The Army Chaplaincy is a multi-faith program—ministers, priests, imams, rabbis, and more, make up the Chaplaincy. While each Army Chaplain is a clergy person in their specific denomination or faith group and won’t be asked to perform services or duties outside of their denomination, their role is to promote spirituality and faith as a whole, and serve all Soldiers, regardless of background and religion.

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