U.S. Navy Chaplains

If you are interested in becoming a Nazarene Navy Chaplain, you may contact the following chaplains for more information:

Dr. Donald L. Wilson
Chaplain (Colonel) USA (Ret)
Military Chaplain Endorser:

 

Introduction
The Navy Chaplaincy is a unique ministry--a diverse and exciting opportunity to bring spiritual values and guidance to the many men and women of the sea services. The Chaplain Corps offers you a future filled with possibilities.

Chaplain Corps officers are religious professionals in spiritual care. They work in collaboration with all Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard commands throughout the world to deliver religious ministry to active-duty personnel and their families. The areas of responsibility include:

  • Navy ships at sea, homeported in the continental United States and overseas;
  • Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard units and chapels at home and around the world;
  • Navy hospitals near military bases;
  • Service academies and military training schools.

Navy Chaplains conduct religious services, provide pastoral counseling, give spiritual leadership, supply religious education, facilitate the worship of faiths other than their own, serve men and women of many religious backgrounds, and work in a truly interfaith setting. Wherever assigned, you'll be a member of a highly professional, committed team.

The Navy welcomes applicants who meet specific eligibility and educational requirements and who wish to begin the highly competitive process that leads to a commission in the Navy Chaplain Corps.

Ministry Outreach

Protestant Chaplains
A Protestant chaplain in the Navy ministers in a truly pluralistic setting. Working with different faiths of the Christian tradition and facilitating for the needs of other religious communities, a Protestant chaplain has an interesting and diverse ministry.

Protestant chaplains in the Navy provide:

  • Ministry of the Word by preaching to congregations of active-duty personnel and their families at a naval base, Marine Corps air station, or Coast Guard boot camp.
  • Celebration of the Lord's Supper to a field unit on exercises in Korea;
  • Bible studies for Marines in the field in Okinawa or Sailors onboard aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean;
  • Counseling for troubled spouses overseas or classes preparing for a return and reunion of military personnel and their families after a deployment;
  • Advice for commanding officers on moral and quality-of-life issues
  • Crisis ministry at the time of death or national disaster.

For information on becoming a Nazarene Navy Chaplain, call us at 1-800-233-8962 or email us.

Command Religious Program
Throughout its history, the Navy has recognized its responsibility to provide for religious ministries to meet the needs and rights of its personnel. From the very beginnings of naval service, the Navy adopted a policy that would ensure that "Commanders of ships of the thirteen United Colonies, are to take care that divine services be performed" (U.S. Navy Regulations, adopted 28 November, 1775). This obligation makes possible the practice of religion and guarantees that citizens serving in the naval service are not deprived of opportunities for the free exercise of religion.

Commanders and commanding officers have provided programs of ministry in support of the free exercise of religion. They have supported and managed the Command Religious Program as an integral and essential element of their administration, planning, programming, and budgeting for religious activities.

Navy chaplains appointed to the Chaplain Corps develop and execute the Command Religious Program under the direction of their commanding officers. This fosters high morale, develops and strengthens the moral and spiritual well-being of the personnel in each command, and ensures that chaplains are provided the necessary support to carry out their mission.

Professionally qualified clergy, certified and endorsed by theirs denominations, carry out this vital ministry. This team of highly skilled men and women reaches out to people in the name of God.

Chaplain Candidate Program

THEOLOGICAL STUDENT PROGRAM
To assist in the orderly procurement of chaplains, the Department of the Navy sponsors a program for theological students. The Chaplain Candidate Program is designed to provide an opportunity for theological students to affiliate with the Naval Reserve, receive a commission as a student officer, and receive training in preparation for possible entry into the Navy Chaplaincy. Although this is a Chaplain Corps Program, the commissioned student is not a commissioned chaplain.

Qualified college graduates, with at least 120 semester hours of undergraduate credits, who are attending accredited theological schools, may be commissioned in the grade of ensign in the Navy Reserve. A student may be promoted to Lieutenant (junior grade) (LTJG) in the program and will hold his or her commission until graduation and ordination. At that time, the commission may be superseded by a direct appointment to LTJG, Chaplain Corps, U.S. Naval Reserve with or without extended active duty.

Requirements

  • Approval (endorsement) by an ecclesiastical agency recognized by the Armed Forces Chaplains Board.
  • At least 21 and less than 36 years old.
  • Citizen of the United States of America.
  • Physically qualified by the standards of Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, U.S. Navy.
  • Possess 120 semester hours of undergraduate credits from an accredited college or university listed in the "Education Possess 120 semester hours of Directory, Colleges & Universities" published by the Department of Education (formerly HEW).
  • Be matriculated in a theological school listed in the Official Catholic Directory, the Directory of the Association of Theological Schools, or a graduate school of religion which is a component part of a college or university listed in the "Education Directory, Colleges & Universities" as accredited on the graduate theological level, toward an MDiv or equivalent degree of 72 semester hours.

No Financial Assistance: the Chaplain Candidate Program does not provide tuition nor does it give a financial subsidy for theological students.

Training
Students in the Program are expected to attend the eight-week basic course at the Naval Chaplains School, Newport, Rhode Island. The course may be divided into two four-week periods attended at separate times. Even though most Theological Student Program Officers attend the basic course in the summer, the course may be attended during the fall, winter, or spring sessions. A student attending the Chaplains School will be paid full pay and allowances as an ensign for the duration of the school, as well as for travel to and from the school.

Following completion of Chaplains School, two weeks of Active Duty for Training (ACDUTRA) for the following year, such as the Marine Corps Indoctrination course, may be requested. Thirty days of on-the-job training may also be requested by Chaplain Candidate Program Officers.

Drilling
Theological Student Program Officers may affiliate with chaplain or general Volunteer Training Units in the Naval Reserve. They will not be assigned to pay billets. Participation in the Naval Reserve training program is understood to be permissive on the part of the Navy and voluntary on the part of the student while in theological school. Because of the priority given to completing their theological training, Chaplain Candidate Program Officers are not required to attend unit drills. However, they are encouraged to participate as fully as possible in the Naval Reserve, thereby taking advantage of available training, the experience of the chaplain(s) in the Reserve unit, and accruing points toward years of qualifying service.

Benefits
Students appointed as ensigns in this program are entitled to all the privileges commensurate with their rank and classifications. As they avail themselves of training, the students accrue longevity for pay purposes which will materially benefit them upon commencement of active duty.

Obligation
After they are commissioned, students in this program must attend Chaplains School at their earliest convenience. Upon graduation and ordination, the Theological Student Program Officer must accept, if offered, a superseding commission in the Chaplain Corps, U.S. Naval Reserve. Upon acceptance of the superseding commission, the chaplain is obligated to six years of service in the Naval Reserve, the first five of which shall be in a Ready Reserve status. A new ecclesiastical endorsement is required for a superseding commission.

Church of the Nazarene

USA/Canada Region

17001 Prairie Star Parkway

Lenexa, KS 66220

Phone: 913.577.2830

Toll-free: 800.306.9948

usacanadaregion@nazarene.org
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©2017 USA/Canada Regional Office

Church of the Nazarene

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