What is a Chaplain?
The office of Chaplain is a diversified position of help. The Chaplain is a spiritual leader that specializes in workplace, or on-site, short term intervention ministry.
Who can become a Chaplain?
Chaplaincy covers a variety of ministerial services and offers different levels of ministerial requirements according to agency policy. Some agencies require their Chaplains to be Ordained Ministers, often Pastors of local church bodies, and have a specific educational background. Others require specific Chaplaincy training and membership in a recognized Chaplaincy organization that certifies different levels of Chaplaincy according to education and experience. Chaplaincy organizations and Fellowships offer non-pastoral ministers an opportunity to serve in the position of a Chaplain through specific training, certification and designation in their chosen field of ministry, thereby, allowing anyone who feels called of God to minister as a Chaplain.
Credentialing in the International Fellowship of Chaplains shall be open to Chaplains, Ministers and Ministries whose religious background, teachings, programs, biblical standards and standards are acceptable to the governing body of the fellowship.
What are the age requirements to become a Chaplain?
You must be 18 years or older to be licensed or ordained as a chaplain in the I.F.O.C. However, youth ages 15-17 can participate in our Cadet program. See Cadet page for more information.
Can I be a member of more than one organization?
Yes. Most Chaplains are members of multiple fellowships.
What can I expect to be paid as a beginning Chaplain?
Some Chaplains serve as volunteers and some serve as paid staff depending on numerous factors. Often Chaplains start off in volunteer positions that develop into paid positions.
How do you raise money? Is it tax deductible?
Funds are raised via membership fees, seminar fees, and donations. Donations are tax-deductible under 501c3 with the Internal Revenue Service.
Why do you charge membership and training fees? How is the money used?
All fellowships and organizations require operating capital. Income goes to pay operating overhead costs, insurance premiums to cover IFOC Chaplains, and furthering Chaplaincy across the nation and internationally.
Can I pay my membership fees with a credit/debit card?
Yes. Please see our Membership requirements area for more information on joining.
For Pastors - What authority do you take over a member of my flock when they become members of your fellowship?
The ecclesiastical authority over your members remains in your hands as their Pastor. We are here to help, not divide. We License and Ordain those who seek our fellowship in that area and that meet our requirements.
We’ve written more about the differences between pastors and chaplains here.
What is Frontline Chaplains International and how does it work together with I.F.O.C.?
In 2018, following a thorough review of corporate policies, it was determined that the International Fellowship of Chaplains needed a larger corporate umbrella in order to facilitate the future growth and expansion of the ministry. Accordingly, the I.F.O.C. incorporated as Frontline Chaplains International, Inc. (FCI) with I.F.O.C. as a DBA.
All international training and commissioned chaplains are now known as Frontline Chaplains International. All United States training and credentialed chaplains will continue to be known as International Fellowship of Chaplains (I.F.O.C.).