The Army Chaplaincy is a religiously diverse population reflecting the diversity of the Army, yet each chaplain must minister in accordance to the guidelines of their distinct faith group. Army Chaplains oversee the spiritual care of their assigned units wherever they may train or deploy. They also assist with the congregational care of their assigned posts by performing religious ceremonies, rituals, and rites in accordance to their respective faiths.
Unlike most officers in the Army, a chaplain begins serving as a staff officer immediately. As a member of the commander's special staff, the chaplain is responsible for providing advice in matters pertaining to religion, morals, and morale. The chaplain serves the Army with a chaplain assistant (56M) as part of a Unit Ministry Team (UMT). As a non-combatant, chaplains do not possess a weapon. The chaplain assistant provides security for the UMT and assists with the administrative aspects of the UMT's ministry. Fully trained in the technical arena of religious support and Soldier-specific tasks, chaplain assistants are an integral part of the UMT's ministry and mission.