Chaplains serve in a variety of settings and environments. Depending on the type of setting to which an OCCI clergy may feel “Call within a Call” (St Mother Teresa) to serve as an OCCI Chaplain, each setting dictates the type of services a chaplain may be required to offer.
There are several types certifications which an OCCI Chaplain can attain based on the Chaplain type he or she puruses. For example, if you want to serve as a volunteer police chaplain, then the International Conference of Police Chaplains (ICPC – http://www.icpc4cops.org) is where you will want to go to learn about what training and certification ICPC provides to allow you to serve in a law enforcement environment.
If you want to serve as a full-time or part-time Hospital Chaplain, then there are several orgainzations you’ll want to review to attain the proper training and certifications required to work in a Hospital environment. Some of the organizations for Hospital Chaplains include:
- ACPE – Association for Clinical Pastoral Education
- APC – Association of Professional Chaplains
- CPSP – College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy
- SCA – Spiritual Care Association
One training requirement which virutally all Chaplain Certifications for clinical settings require, such as serving as a chaplain in a hospital setting, is known as “Clinical Pastoral Education” Units (or CPE units). Depending on the certification type you decide to attain, you’ll be required to have, at a minimum, 4 CPE units. If you want to become a Supervisor for CPE, some Supervisor Training (after you attain the Chaplain Certifcation) may require up to 16 CPE units.
Ecclesiastical Endorsement from your Dicoesan Bishop will typically be required when you submit your resume, your Chaplain educational and professional organizational membership coinciding with the specialized Chaplaincy setting in which you will serve. In OCCI, it also attests to your semimary training (or equivalent), your vocational calling to chaplaincy, your ordination as a Priest, Transitional Deacon or Permanent Deacon, and you serve under the supervision of your Diocesan Bishop in OCCI as well as the OCCI Office of Chaplains. It also attests you have, or will, attain the appropriate specialized education and certifcation requirements needed to serve in the specialize ministry setting.
For example, if you want to be a Law Enforcement Chaplain, it will state that you are (or will become) a member of the Interational Conference of Police Chaplains and that you have (or will attain within a short period of time – usually 1-2 years) the “Basic Chaplain Credential” through ICPC in addition to any specialized training and orentation the Chaplain Office for the police department in which you will serve.