Hospital Chaplain

Uplift hospital patients through religious guidance.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$24,000 – $77,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Hospital Chaplains do?

Hospital patients, along with their families and the staff members who care for them, often cannot make it to church. So the church comes to them instead. Or at least the Hospital Chaplain does. As a Hospital Chaplain, you comfort ill or dying patients, and provide spiritual support to them along with the staff members who work during church hours.

Hospitals have Chaplains of all major religions either on staff or nearby, in case a patient wishes to speak with them. Often, you’re called in to comfort the patient and their family as they struggle through such a difficult time. Other times, a patient simply wants you to pray for their speedy recovery. Patients may also ask that the Hospital Chaplain pray with them to help ease their anxiety before a surgery or other medical procedure.

During the days you work, you can be called to speak with anyone at the hospital who wishes to see you. If the hospital regularly admits patients of your faith, you may work regular shifts. If the faith is less common in your area, you may work from home and come in only when a patient asks for you.

Regardless of when and where you serve, though, one thing’s for sure: Your work touches lives in a deep way. It can even encourage faster recovery by reducing the patients’ stress and anxiety.

Should I be a Hospital Chaplain?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.

  • How to become a Hospital Chaplain

    Hospital Chaplains often have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:gsp59s&chl=no+college+%2814%25%29|certificate+%288%25%29|associate%27s+%2818%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2825%25%29|master%27s+%2827%25%29|doctorate+%288%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,14,27
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