Peer Chaplain Training


We All Have Gifts To Offer, Photo & design by: Erik Wikstrom
Photo & design by: Erik Wikstrom Part of UU Media Works

What’s a Peer Chaplain??? Peer Chaplains are caring, understanding and compassionate listeners. They are there to offer one-on-one, personal care and attention to those whose needs go beyond what the larger conference community can provide. These are not certified professionals, but every-day people with a desire to serve their fellow human beings. The chaplain is one of the most important positions at a conference or other UU community event because of the emotionally supportive and spiritually nurturing role that they play in the community as a whole.

What’s this training all about??? The training for this event will be led by a pair of facilitators, youth and adult, with experience serving as chaplains. The programming is designed to teach basic skills necessary for effective chaplaining such as active listening and responsive awareness. In addition, the training will cover topics such as the chaplain’s role in the conference community and will address issues of confidentiality and ethical chaplain behavior. Ultimately, each participant will be challenged to take an inward look into their reasons for being a chaplain as they strive to find ways of enhancing their abilities to serve others.


It is for YOUTH (ages 14-19) who want to learn these concepts and skills, and then may possibly act as a peer chaplain at youth conferences or other UU events. ADVISORS (at least 25 years old) who want to support youth, improve their pastoral care for youth, and who also want to learn the skills and then possibly act as adult peer chaplains at youth cons. (Advisors must be approved as advisors by their congregation and may have some youth supervision responsibility at this event, but will be able to sleep) This training is also being offered to YOUNG ADULTS (18-35) who are active within the young adult community.

The goal is a maximum of 30 people. Participants will be chosen for leadership ability and peer chaplaincy potential, and should come prepared for a fun, working retreat. The application form (see below) will be reviewed by Regional staff who will determine the applicant’s appropriateness to serve as a Peer Chaplain. This is not a youth conference.

Peer Chaplain Trainings are scheduled around the region throughout the year. Check the calendar for the current listings.