The Seventh-day Adventist Church grants several categories of ecclesiastical endorsement: supervisory chaplain (health care only), chaplain (all), associate chaplain (health care only) and Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) resident, intern or supervisor-in-training (health care only). Clergy who volunteer their services as chaplains must meet all the standards and requirements for ecclesiastical endorsement. Ecclesiastical approval is given to chaplain candidates for the military.
Non-clergy volunteers who assist chaplains as spiritual care-givers in campuses, hospitals, military bases or prisons must be sponsored and supervised by chaplains in accordance with the local policies of the institutions served. ACM can provide general guidance to chaplains about establishing policies, practices and training programs for caregivers. ACM does not approve or endorse lay members as chaplains.
FA 13 30 Requirements for Ecclesiastical Endorsement for Related Ministries—Endorsement for the specialized ministerial disciplines of pastoral counseling and spiritual director may be issued in cases where the applicant is qualified and is engaging in that specialty as part of an ongoing professional practice or organized program.
1. General Requirements—
a. The person must be functioning with a clear pastoral identity.
b. The local conference must be supportive of this ministry and willing to issue appropriate ministerial credentials.
c. Applicants must meet all requirements for chaplain ecclesiastical endorsement, as well as the specialized requirements below.
2. Specialized Requirements
a. Pastoral Counselor—The applicant must qualify as a professional counselor, which includes an appropriate graduate degree and supervised practice in counseling, and marriage and family therapy.
1. State licensing where available and required.
2. Certification from a recognized national association, such as the American Association of Pastoral Counselors, the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, etc.
b. Spiritual Director—The applicant must qualify as a practicing spiritual director, which requires training and certification from a recognized spiritual formation training program.