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Job Role
Job Role


As a ‘friend and adviser to all’, you’ll preach the word, and give spiritual and moral guidance to any person serving in a fighting force.

Fast track
  • Undergraduate Degree
  • Surface Fleet
  • Chaplaincy
  • Officer level

At a glance

Your role as a Chaplain will be unlike anything you could do in your civilian career. You’ll work in a multi-faith environment, providing friendship, guidance and support to the people who serve our nation.
More than 2000 personnel serving in the HMS Queen Elizabeth Carrier Strike Group in the United States have held services of Remembrance
It's the sheer variety of opportunities on offer in the Naval Service which means I've never got bored. I've served operationally with the Royal Marines, I've been to sea on small ships looking for mines in the Gulf and even ministered beneath the waves in a submarine. The ministry of a naval chaplain is so varied but also in many ways just like parish ministry, you become an important part of the community; surely God is present among those in the most difficult and challenging situations in the world. To be an expression of that, as a royal naval chaplain, is an absolute privilege.


Royal Navy Chaplain

Role details

What you’ll do

The Chaplain is a vital member of any naval or commando unit, with a unique congregation. The team of 30,000 men and women who make up the Naval Service come from all walks of life. They do extraordinary jobs in extraordinary circumstances, all over the world, 365 days a year. It means your congregation – and crewmates – need a unique type of support. We welcome people who practise all faiths (including those with none), so you’ll need to be a friend, adviser and spiritual guide to them all in a multi-faith environment. You’ll be there for whoever needs you to be. You’ll serve the people who serve our nation. 

Your role

  • Just as in civilian life, you’ll preach the word, administer the sacraments, visit the sick, baptise, confirm, marry, bury, and counsel the bereaved, anxious and lost. 
  • With no rank of your own, you share that of the person you’re talking with, from Rear Admiral to the most junior rating. 
  • Develop a wide range of new skills through military training, including firefighting and first aid. You’ll need to apply these skills in operational environments, as well as on exercises.
  • Travel the world, giving crucial guidance to serving personnel and their families. The work you do when mobilised will make a vital contribution to protecting our nations interests. 

Pay & benefits

  • Initial earnings of £59,000
  • 6 weeks of paid holiday every year
  • Extra allowances for days spent at sea
  • Free medical and dental care
  • Membership of the Armed Forces Pension Scheme
  • Travel all over the world 

Skills for life

Qualifications you'll gain

  • The opportunity to study for a PGCE or Masters degree

    The opportunity to attend Staff College

Skills you'll develop

  • Communication skills working with Navy personnel, who may have no church background
  • Gain experience working with young people



  • Aged 26 to 48
  • Be an ordained minister of one of the following churches: Anglican, Assemblies of God, Baptist Union of Great Britain, Church of Scotland, Churches in Communities International, Congregational Church, Elim Pentecostal, Methodist, Presbyterian Church of Ireland, Roman Catholic, or the United Reformed Church 
  • Or be an authorised and qualified religious leader from the Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim or Sikh Faith Communities
  • A theological degree or an equivalent recognised qualification
  • 3 years of proven pastoral experience
  • To be employed by a faith community at the point of application 
  • You must be a United Kingdom national, or Commonwealth citizen or Dual National. Dual Nationality restrictions do apply
  • Able to pass the Royal Naval Fitness Test (RNFT)
  • Pass the Naval Swimming Test
  • Hold a full and valid UK Driving Licence

Skills & Interests

  • Understanding of the diverse rigours of Naval life
  • Ability to work individually, without the structure and direct support of your faith community
  • Physically and mentally fit for the challenge
  • Ability to work as part of a theologically diverse, ecumenical and multi-faith team

Joining Process

From picking your role to the first day of training; everything you need to know as a Chaplain

Career Progression

From responsibilities to pay, find out where this role can take you.

Got a question?

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