Prayer Chaplain Overview

prayer chaplains

About Our Prayer Chaplain Ministry

What is a Prayer Chaplain?

A Prayer Chaplain  is a lay person who functions as an extension of the pastoral ministry of the congregation.  A Prayer Chaplain is not a counselor or an ordained minister.  He or she is a congregation member who wants to serve and to grow spiritually.  Being a Prayer Chaplain is transformative soul work as it deepens one's spiritual path through prayer and service.  No prior experience in prayer or praying with others is required to serve as a Prayer Chaplain.

What Does a Prayer Chaplain do?

A Prayer Chaplain:

  • Is available to support others on their spiritual journey.
  • Creates and holds sacred space.
  • Lovingly listens and holds what is heard in the strictest of confidence, meaning that what is shared with the Prayer Chaplain is not discussed with anyone else, including the person who made the initial prayer request.
  • Prays with others.

Prayer chaplains serve during Sunday services several times a month, holding spiritual space and praying with congregants before and after services. They also make monthly wellness calls to congregants who request them.

Learn more >>

How do I become a Prayer Chaplain?

A Prayer Chaplain completes 24 hours of annual training and makes the commitment to serve his or her church community for one year. Prayer Chaplain training at Unity of Madison is typically held January thru March with meetings on-site and one weekend off-site at a retreat center.  An orientation session to the program is held during early January.  Please look for that information on the Events Calendar or contact Pat Arnold, Prayer Chaplain Coordinator at

2017 Prayer Chaplain Training Schedule:

Jan 7             Saturday Training Session; 1 - 2:30pm, Upper Level

Feb 3-5         Fri-Sunday Offsite Training Weekend @ Holy Wisdom; 5pm Fri - Noon Sunday

Feb 18           Saturday Training Session; 9:30am - 1pm, Lower Level

Mar 18           Saturday Training Session; 9:30am - 3pm, Lower Level

Apr 06           Thursday Dedication Ceremony to fellow Chaplains; 7 - 9pm, Sanctuary

Apr 09           Sunday Dedication Ceremony to Congregation; both services, Sanctuary


* Attendance at all sessions is mandatory for completion of training.