Secondary Trauma among Chaplains

Chaplains are a special type of caregiver because they join people in their pain and listen to their narratives of strife, suffering, and torment and because they help people cope with spiritual trauma and existential crises. Chaplains generally work in interfaith multicultural institutional settings (military, hospital, prison, academic, etc.) while still bound doctrinally, liturgically, theologically, ethically, and socially by the faith groups endorsing them as qualified to work. Like therapists, medical professionals, and psychiatric caregivers, by definition, chaplains listen empathetically, provide care and counseling, and help people process trauma. Chaplains also act as a source of spiritual guidance, religious information, faith inspiration, and spiritual healing, which greatly differentiates them from other types of caregivers. This added spiritual dimension, along with the fact that faith journeys ...

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