Multifaith Chaplaincy

* is a research project led by Religions for Peace Australia and funded by the Victorian Government’s Multicultural Affairs and Social Cohesion Department to improve chaplaincy resources and training for Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim and other faith communities. Existing chaplaincy programs in mainstream faith communities will also benefit from research and resources supplied.

* focuses on faith leaders (ministers, priests, imams, gurbani, monks, etc.) who are recently arrived in Australia (including the Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim and Sikh communities and the Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Churches)

This project commences following an action research model, and there will be significant modifications and changes on the aim to encourage and train chaplains and spiritual carers within the more recently arrived religious communities most of whom do not have a strong tradition of chaplains and institutional spiritual carers as in hospitals, prisons etc.

Chaplaincy in History

Though it has never been fully recognised, chaplaincy has been part of Australian history right from its European beginnings with the appointment of Rev. Richard Johnson in 1786 by the British Government to be the chaplain to the First Fleet with its sailors, soldiers and convicts under the command of Governor Arthur Phillip. Soon after, Rev. Samuel Marsden arrived to become known as ‘the flogging parson’. Their appointments were part of the government policy to rehabilitate and Christianise the early convicts. However, both chaplains were subsequently appointed as magistrates, which led to a confusion of their roles as grace-givers and judgement-makers. As well, beginning in 1801 there were chaplains to the female and male orphan schools in early New South Wales.

Chaplaincy Summaries

Summaries of existing chaplaincy services – and organisations – have been provided.
You may view these summaries:

1. Military chaplaincy, which incorporates army, naval and air force chaplaincy
2. Health care chaplaincy which incorporates hospital, hospice, mental health, aged and HIV/AIDS chaplaincy
3. Education chaplaincy which incorporates school and university chaplaincy, including to international students
4. Criminal justice chaplaincy which incorporates police, court and prison chaplaincy
5. Emergency services chaplaincy which incorporates fire, ambulance and disaster chaplaincy
6. Industrial chaplaincy which incorporates chaplaincy in airports and seaports
7. Sports chaplaincy, incorporating racing, motorsport, life-saving and team chaplaincies.
8. Migrant and refugee chaplaincy to migrant and refugee communities
9. Youth chaplaincy