Ordained Chaplains

¶151 Description

1. Ordained chaplains are members of the United Brethren church who have been called by God and are pursuing employment as professional members of the chaplaincy.

2. Ordained chaplains provide pastoral care for persons of diverse backgrounds in physical, mental, spiritual, and social need in diverse settings.

3. Their call has been confirmed by the church through a process of examination, education, and accountability.

¶152 Qualifications

To become a candidate for ordination as chaplain, a national conference minister must do the following:

1. Complete the educational requirements for ordination in the Church of the United Brethren in Christ, USA.

2. Complete four units (1600 hours) of Clinical Pastoral Education in an institution accredited by the American College of Pastoral Education.

3. Demonstrate a level of faithfulness and competency which warrants consideration for licentiate status.

¶153 Procedure for Ordaining Chaplains

The following procedure is established for the ordination of chaplains.

1. Request by the National Conference Minister

After holding a national conference license for a minimum of two years, individuals may submit a request to the Ministerial Licensing and Ordination Team for consideration for the office of ordained chaplain in the Church of the United Brethren in Christ, USA.

2. References

The applicant shall submit five letters of reference giving evidence of the applicant’s marriage and family relationships, interpersonal relationships and social skills, and faithfulness in Christian living. The letters should be obtained from the following individuals:

a. Two Clinical Pastoral Education supervisors.

b. The pastor of the local United Brethren church the candidate attends.

c. A layperson serving in leadership at the local United Brethren church the candidate attends.

d. A friend or relative.

3. Written Responses

The applicant shall submit responses to the questions in the chapter, “Questions Asked of Candidates for Ordination.”

4. Examination

Applicants shall be examined by the Ministerial Licensing and Ordination Team.

5. Ordination by the National Conference

a. Following the examination, the examining committee shall report its findings to the Pastoral Ministry Leadership Team and make any recommendations it deems consistent with its findings.

b. Pending a favorable recommendation from the examining committee, the Pastoral Ministry Leadership Team may choose to grant ordination status.

¶154 Loss of License

1. The Pastoral Ministry Leadership Team shall have the authority to revoke the credentials of any chaplain whose life and ministry are inconsistent with the expectations detailed in the Discipline.

2. Should they desire, the chaplain shall be granted an opportunity for a hearing before final action is taken.

¶155 Expectations of Chaplains

In addition to the general expectations of all ministers and members in the Church of the United Brethren in Christ, USA, elders are expected to faithfully fulfill the following.

1. Annual Reporting

All chaplains must file an annual report of their activities with the bishop.

2. Accountability

Since this license is granted by the national conference, ordained chaplains are accountable to the national conference.

3. Ministerial Service

a. Ordained chaplains shall work under the direction of the bishop.

b. Ordained chaplains are authorized to officiate at funerals and weddings and to administer the ordinances of baptism and communion.

c. Ordained chaplains may fill pulpits when ministers are ill or on vacation.

d. Ordained chaplains may serve as associates, but not as the senior pastor, of any congregation.

4. Continuing Education for Elders

All chaplains are required to complete CEUs annually as offered by the American College of Chaplains and National Association of Catholic Chaplains.

The Pastoral Ministry Handbook is the responsibility of the the Pastoral Ministry Leadership Team. They can make revisions at any time.

The entire Pastoral Ministry Handbook can be downloaded as a PDF file.

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