Specialized Pastoral Ministry

Meeting the Needs of Others


Through The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s Specialized Pastoral Ministry programs, more than 580 ordained pastors as well as commissioned men and women receive training to serve as institutional and emergency services chaplains, pastoral counselors and clinical pastoral educators.

These professional church workers offer comprehensive service that includes Word or Word and Sacrament ministry, counseling, compassionate care and contextual education for specialized pastoral ministries.

  • Continue reading
  • Chaplains work in institutions such as:

    • Hospitals

    • Prisons

    • Hospices

    • Retirement homes

    • Homes for people who are physically and mentally challenged

     

    Chaplains work in Emergency Services Chaplaincy such as:

    • Law enforcement

    • Fire fighting

     

    Chaplains work in Disaster Response

     

    Pastoral counselors work one-on-one or in small groups in:

    • Clinics

    • Private practices

    • Counseling centers

    • Congregations

     

    Specialized Pastoral Ministry programs address human concerns in multiple settings:

    • Self-worth in later years (long-term care facilities)

    • Lifestyle changes (general health care facilities)

    • Values and meaning in life (mental health care centers)

    • Justice, forgiveness and interpreting God's love (correctional institutions

    • Direction for life renewal (pastoral counseling settings)

    • Quality of life at life's end (hospices)

    • Spiritual renewal (substance abuse and counseling centers)

    • Maximum spiritual potential for individuals (people with disabilities)

    • Crisis response (workplace, fire/police headquarters)

    • Disaster trauma services (through congregations or other institutions following an emergency)

     

    Training and equipping ministers to serve in various, specialized settings, clinical educators:

    • Assist students in applying their theology clearly and meaningfully

    • Teach skills which equip ministers to provide counseling and pastoral care to people who are suffering and/or are in crisis

    • Help students become aware of the grace and strength they have by the power and mercy of the Holy Spirit to keep themselves out of God's healing way

SPM in the Midst of Crisis

Specialized Pastoral Ministry

LCMS Specialized Pastoral Ministry will host a free educational event Oct. 2-4 in Belleville, Ill., for LCMS pastoral counselors, institutional and emergency services chaplains, and clinical pastoral educators.

 Register online

Prison Ministry Conference

Disaster Response Chaplaincy

The LCMS Prison/Jail Ministry Conference will be Aug. 17-18 in St. Louis. The theme is “Captive Souls … Mercy for All,” based on Rom. 11:32: “For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all.”

 Save the date

Resources & Services

Audio

Rev. Dr. Philip Kuehnert and Rev. Lee Joesten made presentations at a “Pastoral Care in Pluralistic Contexts” conference, and Rev. Russell Helbig led Bible Study.

 Listen to presentations

 

Call Process

Specialized pastoral ministers interested in receiving a call from the LCMS Board for National Mission should follow this process.

 Download info sheet

 Code of Ethics

 

Caring Connections

Caring Connections is inter-Lutheran journal for practitioners and teachers of pastoral care counseling.

 Read Caring Connections

 

Christus In Mundo Award

Rev. R. James Rivett and Rev. Dr. William W. Wagner received the Christus In Mundo Award in 2016 for their significant contributions in specialized pastoral ministry.

 Read story and view photos

 

Devotions

Prisoner’s Reflections: Meditations for Prisoners is a collection of devotions written by Thomas Bird, a Lutheran Christian who was in prison for many years.

 Download devotions

 

Ecclesiastical Endorsement

The LCMS endorses its specialized pastoral ministers for field work through a process involving an endorsement application, continuing education, peer reviews and annual reports.

 Get started

 Annual report form

 Peer Review description

 Code of Ethics

 Personal Data Form

 

Emergency Services Chaplaincy

Emergency services chaplains provide emotional and spiritual care to members of law enforcement, emergency medical services and fire services.

 Read brochure

 View video presentations

 Training resources

 Activity report form

 Personal Data Form

Event presentations

The Zion XVI Conference focused on the importance of chaplaincy, pastoral counseling and clinical pastoral education in the Lutheran church.

 Presentations  |  Video archives

 

Informational Brochure

Learn about the Specialized Pastoral Ministry and Clinical Education program and its requirements.

 Download brochure

 

Prison Ministry

Learn about events and resources available for ministry to those in prison.

 Prison and Jail Ministry brochure

 Guidelines for Celebration of Holy Baptism in a Correctional Setting

 Purchase “Prison and Jail Ministry Handbook” from thebookpatch.com

 Devotions: “Prisoner’s Reflections: Meditations for Prisoners”

 Freed in Christ Bible Study: Participant Guide

 Freed in Christ Bible Study: Leader Guide

 District Coordinators

 

Scholarships

Eligible ordained and commissioned individuals seeking ecclesiastical endorsement and certification/credentialing may apply for a scholarship.

 Learn more and apply

 

Verbatim Outline

This template is provided to guide specialized pastoral ministers through contacting those in need, and the outline helps document visits for peer and/or supervisor review.

 Download outline

 

 


Rev. Joel Hempel, Director

  Contact Ministry

  Facebook Page

 

 

 

Ministry Overview

Specialized Pastoral Ministry trains and endorses LCMS ministers to serve people who are ill, imprisoned, aging, troubled, conflicted and isolated.

Download information sheet


Recent Articles & Stories

Specialized Pastoral Ministry – Reporter
LCMS Specialized Pastoral Ministry – A Pastoral Touch – August 2018 Newsletter
Monday, August 13, 2018 5:19:58 PM

Register now for prison ministry conference
Wednesday, May 30, 2018 10:48:22 AM

Specialized Pastoral Ministry announces new Henry F. Wind award
Thursday, May 10, 2018 8:36:46 AM

 View Archives


Events

 View more LCMS events


 Stay up-to-date

A Pastoral Touch provides opportunities for service, important announcements and a quarterly pastoral letter from the LCMS Office of Specialized Pastoral Ministry.

Sign up to receive A Pastoral Touch and other newsletters in your myLCMS profile.

 

Read A Pastoral Touch Archives

 

You can help SPM

Your gift for Specialized Pastoral Ministry supplies materials and focused resources to LCMS ordained and commissioned workers serving as chaplains, counselors and educators in places like hospitals, prisons, retirement homes and long-term care centers for the elderly and disabled.

Gifts also support the recruitment, certification (endorsement) and training scholarships for potential SPM clergy.

Give Now


Give by mail

To make a donation by mail, make a check payable to “The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod” or “LCMS.”

Write “Specialized Pastoral Ministry” or “SPM” on the memo line of your check or on an enclosed note, and send to:

  • The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
    Mission Advancement
    P.O. Box 66861
    St. Louis, MO 63166-6861


Give by phone

To make a credit card gift over the phone, you can call the LCMS toll-free gift line between 8 a.m. and 4:10 p.m. Central time.

  • 888-930-4438


Questions?

Contact LCMS Mission Advancement if you have questions or want to discuss the impact you can have on the LCMS Specialized Pastoral Ministry through your Christian giving.

Join us on the journey

Lutherans Engage the World

Lutheran Engage the WorldEngaging the Church in the work of witness and mercy across the globe in our life together.

Read now

 

The Lutheran Witness

The Lutheran WitnessInterpreting the contemporary world from a Lutheran Christian perspective

Learn more

Concordia Publishing House

Concordia Publishing House

Contact Us
 

  Email us
 

  Church Info Center: 888-843-5267
  Staff Switchboard: 800-248-1930
  Donor Care Line: 888-930-4438
 

 1333 S. Kirkwood Road, St. Louis, MO 63122-7226

 

Guide Star Logo BBB Logo


The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod Inc., including Mission Central (in Mapleton, Iowa), is an IRS registered 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity.

A contribution designated (restricted) for a specific purpose when accepted, will be used only to fund expenses related to that purpose. Occasionally, we may receive more in contributions for a particular purpose than can be wisely applied to it in the foreseeable future or the purpose may cease to be feasible. In these situations, the LCMS will make reasonable attempts to contact contributors to apply their contribution differently. If a contributor cannot be contacted, the LCMS will use the gift to meet a similar pressing need that most closely matches the contributor's original intent.  Consistent with Synod Board policy, no more than 12 percent of a charitable contribution may be applied to administering gifts and communicating with contributors.  Contributions received and accepted by the LCMS are deemed to be in agreement with this statement.

Our Tax Identification Number is: 43-0658188

>>View Donor Transparency Resources


Employment  |  For the Media  |  Site Map  |  Privacy

 

© 2003 – 2010   The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. All Rights Reserved.