CHAPLAINCY IN EDUCATION
Chaplaincy in an education setting can take many shapes, it is essential is that it meets the needs of the institution and responds to the local setting.
There are a variety of models within the Diocese of Exeter; however, there are some fundamental principles which need to be considered.
- Support from senior management
- Support from local church communities, ecumenical where possible
- Support from the Diocese, licensing of chaplains, providing training, etc.
- Adequate resources – these need not be financial
- A base – this can be virtual
- Chaplaincy is not a vehicle for proselytising
Chaplaincy can offer:
- Additional and specific spiritual and pastoral support of students
- Support for staff
- Additional support/ resource to the curriculum
- Critical incident support
- Community links
- Can be seen as working beyond the “gates”
- Additional activities
- Chaplains can often go where other “fear to tread”
Remember that Chaplaincy is to the whole community.
Chaplaincy can best be described as the Walk to Emmaus, Chaplains walk alongside all participants of an institution, they listen to their story, support their issues, if appropriate share their own story and signpost to others for further guidance and support if necessary.
Chaplaincy in Education is transformative and:
- offers spiritual and pastoral care to everyone and shares the life of the community;
- is distinctively Christian and utterly inclusive and works with people of all faiths and cultures;
- is ‘the public face of God’ for the community;
- ‘is there to listen and care, to pray for and bless the school/college/university.’
Chaplains can be lay or ordained and from any Christian church. With the support of local churches and the diocese, almost anyone can be called and trained to be a chaplain.
Chaplains have the opportunity to be part of wider regional and national support networks and training opportunities – details these can be found in our newsletters.