What does a Hospital Chaplain do?

Learn all about Hospital Chaplain duties, skills and much more. Get expert advice on how to become a Hospital Chaplain.

Photo of Brenna Goyette
Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 3 min read

A Hospital Chaplain is a person who provides spiritual and emotional support to patients and their families in a hospital setting. They may also offer guidance and counseling to hospital staff.

Hospital Chaplain job duties include:

  • Provide spiritual guidance and support to patients, families, and staff
  • Conduct religious services and sacramental rites
  • Offer counseling and crisis intervention
  • Make hospital rounds to visit patients
  • Develop and maintain relationships with community clergy
  • Serve as a resource on religious and ethical issues
  • Advocate for the spiritual needs of patients and families
  • Promote interfaith understanding and cooperation
  • Participate in hospital committees and task forces
  • Provide education and training for staff

Hospital Chaplain Job Requirements

Hospital chaplains typically have a bachelor's degree in theology or religious studies, although some have a master's degree. They must also be ordained by their faith tradition and have several years of experience working with people who are sick or dying. Some hospital chaplains are certified by professional organizations such as the Association of Professional Chaplains.

Hospital Chaplain Skills

  • Listening
  • Empathy
  • Active listening
  • Patience
  • Communication
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Problem-solving
  • Organizational skills
  • Time management
  • Critical thinking
  • Stress management

Related: Top Hospital Chaplain Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become a Hospital Chaplain

A hospital chaplain is a professional who provides spiritual and emotional support to patients, families, and staff in healthcare settings. As a chaplain, you will be responsible for providing comfort and care to those who are experiencing physical, mental, and emotional stress. To become a hospital chaplain, you will need to have a strong understanding of different religions and cultures, as well as excellent communication and interpersonal skills. You will also need to be able to work effectively with a team of medical professionals.

If you are interested in becoming a hospital chaplain, the first step is to complete an accredited chaplaincy program. Once you have completed your training, you will need to obtain certification from the Association of Professional Chaplains or another professional organization. After you have obtained your certification, you can begin applying for positions at hospitals or other healthcare facilities.

Related: Hospital Chaplain Resume Example

Related: Hospital Chaplain Interview Questions (With Example Answers)