Critical Dimensions of Chaplaincy

Religion can be a significant agent of change for many individuals. Thus, Chaplains serve as critical staff members that assist client/inmates who choose this path to enhance their knowledge of and commitment to the beliefs and practices of their faith. At the same time, chaplains work in collaboration with other clinical staff in support of formal treatment programs within the four-dimensional model used in Bridges facilities.

For quality management purposes, we have identified four critical dimensions within which all functions of chaplaincy fall:

Personal Development

  • Maintaining a Healthy Spiritual Relationship
  • Maintaining Effective Personal Relationships
  • Sustaining an Active Agenda for Professional Development

Pastoral Ministry

  • Sharing the Good News of God’s Love
  • Offering Supportive Counseling
  • Leading Worship
  • Providing Religious Instruction
  • Promoting Spiritual Growth
  • Maintaining a Ministry of Presence within the Family
  • Building Relationships with Staff


  • Developing and Maintaining an Institutional Plan
  • Developing Volunteers
    1. Recruiting
    2. Training
    3. Supervising/Mentoring
  • Interfacing with Organizational Leadership
  • Interfacing with Institutional Leadership
  • Facilitating All Recognized Faith Groups


  • Fostering Community Awareness and Partnerships
  • Educating the Church and Community about Justice Ministry
  • Assisting with Inmate Family Concerns
  • Assisting with Reentry of Clients/Inmates into the Community