FBI Chaplain Program

Our Purpose is Presence

Founded in 1991, the FBI Chaplain Program is composed of volunteer chaplains who serve at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. and in the FBI's 56 field offices throughout the continental United States, Puerto Rico, and Guam. Employee Assistance Program (EAP) chaplains are assigned to specific field offices and Headquarters divisions, and they're flexible about meeting with employees in the office or at alternative locations.

FBI chaplains offer a ministry of presence and spiritual support to FBI staff. They support the FBI Employee Assistance Program by providing spiritual comfort and care to employees and their families, as well as to task force officers. 

FBI chaplains are often the front-line response for critical events that involve significant traumas or losses that affect employees. They also provide ceremonial support for retirements, graduations, memorials, and other special events.

Anyone who seeks FBI Chaplain services is covered by confidentiality and privilege.

Requirements to Become an FBI Chaplain

FBI chaplains must meet rigorous criteria and pass the same background check/clearance process as FBI employees.

Applicants for the chaplain position must meet the following eight criteria for consideration:

  • Possess a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from a nationally accredited college or university

  • Be ordained, licensed, or commissioned by a nationally recognized ecclesiastical body listed in Mead, Hill, and Atwood’s Handbook of Religious Denominations in the United States

  • Have a minimum of five years of post-ordination faith-based vocational licensing and commissioning experience

  • Have prior chaplaincy experience in a relevant field (e.g., military, law enforcement, fire, prisons, hospital, or college)

  • Provide three professional, written letters of reference that speak to the applicant's suitability for the chaplain position. These letters should be written by individuals who aren't members of the applicant’s congregation. 

  • Provide a written endorsement to serve as a chaplain from a recognized religious authority within the applicant’s faith group

  • Reside within the jurisdiction of the FBI Headquarters division or field office

  • Possess a valid U.S. state driver’s license

In considering each applicant, the selecting officials must determine whether the applicant demonstrates all of the following qualities:

  • The ability to easily and comfortably relate to other people

  • High spiritual and moral standards

  • A broad base of experience that reflects professional maturity, emotional stability, and personal flexibility

  • Tact and consideration in dealing with all people, regardless of color, race, religion, national origin, political affiliation, marital status, parental status, physical or mental disability, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic condition or information, and membership or non-membership in an employee organization, and without personal favoritism

  • Willingness and availability to respond to any and all situations in which the presence of a chaplain is needed

  • A basic knowledge of law enforcement professionals’ duties and stress

Contact Us

For more information, please email the FBI Chaplain Program Coordinator at Chaplain_Recruitment@fbi.gov.

FBI Chaplains

Chaplains are an integral part of the FBI’s crisis intervention program and provide spiritual support to employees in situations ranging from personal tragedies to mass casualty events.

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