Nurturing the Soul of the Army
Since 1775, Army Chaplains have acted as spiritual counselors who support, motivate, and provide emotional guidance to Soldiers and their families.
- Tend to the spiritual needs of every Soldier both at home and while on deployment
- Recognize the physical, mental, and spiritual challenges Soldiers must face every day
- Leverage innovative approaches to counseling, spiritual care, religious programs, and services
The Army Chaplain Advantage
As a member of the U.S. Army Chaplain Corps, you’ll feel fulfillment in ways that you wouldn’t in a civilian career.
Help the Army Family build inner resilience as they deal with unique physical, mental, and spiritual challenges. Support Army leaders as they manage difficult decisions that ensure the safety and future of our country.
Observe the distinctive doctrines of your faith, while honoring and ensuring the right for others to observe their own. Join a team that represents hundreds of denominations and faiths, from ministers and priests to imams and rabbis.
Enjoy the deep satisfaction of performing a vital service for your country, making not only a profound difference in the lives of Soldiers in the Army, but in the lives of their families, friends, and communities.
Many Ways to Make a Difference
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 as a staff chaplain at a medical facility, correctional facility, or combat hospital
- Become an instructor at one of several Officer service schools
- Get advanced training for additional duties including staffing Chaplains in needed locations, and managing Chaplaincy-related personnel, finances, logistics, and facilities
We’ll Pay for Your Education
The Chaplain Candidate Program (CCP) is designed for ministry students who want to explore or get a head start on a career in Army Chaplaincy while still in school. By participating in CCP, you’ll gain valuable experience and make a real impact in the lives of Soldiers and their families.
- Gain valuable ministry education and training
- Enjoy benefits and privileges associated with being an Officer
- Receive up to 100% of tuition costs
Working as an Army Chaplain Part Time
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, spending one weekend a month on Chaplain duties and two weeks a year in training.
Army Chaplain Requirements and Next Steps
Whether you’re looking to start your career or you’re already well into your journey, there are certain requirements and steps you’ll need to take.
- Possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university or are a current graduating college senior
- Secure an endorsement for military service from your faith group
- Enroll or get accepted as a full-time student in an accredited graduate program that qualifies you for ordination
Support Army Chaplains as a Religious Affairs Specialist
The Army Chaplain’s team relies on the support of Religious Affairs Specialists, who honorably coordinate religious programs and worship services. They’re also responsible for performing administrative duties and for bearing arms to protect the Chaplain during times of combat.
Common Questions About Army Chaplains
Do Army Chaplains have to go to Basic Training?
As a Chaplain, you won't participate in the Basic Training that enlisted Soldiers complete. Instead, you'll attend the Direct Commission Course (DCC), a six-week intensive physical, weapons, and leadership course that will prepare you to serve as an Officer, beginning with the rank of first lieutenant.
After completing the DCC, 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, as well as pass the Army fitness test.
Do Army Chaplains have to fight?
No, Chaplains are not issued weapons and are not allowed to engage in combat. During times of combat, Chaplains are protected by Religious Affairs Specialists. However, all Chaplains handle firearms during weapons training, which is required for all members in the Army.
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.