Information for Chaplains

A chaplain represents Humanist values and principles in secular institutions such as a hospital, nursing home, prison, military unit, school, police department, university and/or humanist community. This is intended for those working as chaplains and will not be given or renewed for those not intending to work in an institutional setting and will not be renewed for those who have not had significant institutional work during the endorsement period.

Chaplains are distinguished from Celebrants in their responsibility and authority to work with non-humanists as well as humanists. This position is distinguished by a professional chaplain’s covenant to serve all and exploit none.

Endorsement by the Humanist Society does not entitle a humanist chaplain to a paid chaplain position at an institution.  Any given institute may require volunteers or paid staff to have professional certifications, whether related to chaplaincy, counseling or other credentials. The society endorsement affirms 1) the individual can authentically represent humanism and 2) the individual is ready to serve according to professional standards within and outside the humanist community.

The Board of Chaplaincy Certification Inc. (BCCI), an affiliate of the Association for Professional Chaplains (APC), sets their own standards for certification.  APC recognizes the Humanist Society as an endorser of chaplains.  Employers may require specific professional certifications for individuals to function as a chaplain within their institution.  Click here for more information on the standards set by the BCCI.