SMPD Chaplain BadgeThe St. Marys Police Department implemented the Police Chaplain Program in 2009. Chaplains represent a variety of religious traditions and levels of professionalism, but when they are working in the police world, each “Chaplain” is a chaplain for everyone. Our Police Chaplains seeks to lighten the burden of the officers by performing tasks that have a greater spiritual or social nature rather than a law enforcement nature.

The Chaplain is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to assist police personnel with a variety of services in the field such as death notifications, lost or missing persons, and suicides. In addition, they provide counseling and pastoral services whenever such services are needed or requested. They may respond to major incidents and disasters such as fires, multiple injury incidents, or officer involved shootings providing an empathic ear, displaying a passionate interest in, and the specialized training for pastoral care. Chaplains respect the persons they serve, regardless of race, gender, economic status, religious beliefs or any other factors. 

The Chief of Police offers the services of our Chaplains to other area law enforcement agencies as well. Chaplains donate hundreds of hours to the community and officers each year, but the program is not unique to St. Marys. Police Chaplains exist throughout the United States and serve in a variety of functions for local, County, State, and Federal Agencies. We appreciate our Chaplains and their willingness to serve the Police Department and the City of St. Marys.

Who qualifies as a Police Chaplain?

  • Chaplains must be ordained or licensed ministers in good standing in a recognized religious denomination or group.
  • Chaplains must be skilled in ministry and pastoral care.
  • Chaplains must maintain high spiritual and moral standards.
  • Chaplains must demonstrate a commitment to ministry with police officers.
  • Chaplains must become familiar with and accept the policies and procedures of the Chaplain’s Program and the St. Marys Police Department.
  • Chaplains must possess a valid Georgia driver’s license and be a resident of St. Marys or able to respond within 20 minutes.
  • Chaplain applicants are subject to a background investigation prior to appointment.

 If you are a local member of the clergy and are interested in serving as a Police Chaplain, please email Chaplain Dent and he will contact you.