2015-2016: Cognate Partners Work to Review/Revise 2004 Common Standards for Certification
In August of 2015, five of the six founding organizations that developed and adopted the 2004 documents established a Common Standards Task Force to review and revise one document, Common Standards for Professional Chaplaincy. They were ACPE, APC, CASC, NACC, NAJC. (The other founding cognate partner, AAPC, elected not to participate.) That work ended in December 2015, and by July 2016, the five associations had reviewed and affirmed the recommended revisions. This revised document is now being published for implementation. The NACC Standards Commission, with the review and recommendations of the NACC Certification Commission, decided to keep the Common Qualification and Competencies letters/numbers under its 300 section (ITP, PIC, PPS, OL) format for inserting the NACC competencies for certification. This allows the cognate partners to work together to educate members, create common narrative guides, and provide CPE supervisors a common teaching guide for all our members. All the NACC-specific competencies again are found as sub-points of the CQCs.
Certification for Professional Spiritual Care: Common Qualifications and Competencies 2016
That work ended in December 2015, and by July 2016, the five associations had reviewed and affirmed the recommended revisions. This revised document is now being published for implementation.
We highlight here several features of this new document:
- It has a new title. It is now called Certification for Professional Spiritual Care: Common Qualifications and Competencies (CQCs) to emphasize:
- The core elements of the document: qualification required to apply and competencies needed to be evidenced, and
- Spiritual care versus chaplain, as the Canadian context uses different terminology.
Also, this title distinguishes this document from the Standards of Practice for Professional Chaplains.
- It reaffirms qualifications.
- Endorsement of faith group: The Cognate Partners remain convinced of the essential link between spiritual care and being rooted in one’s faith/spiritual tradition, whatever it may be. The spiritual care provider respects and fosters respect for every faith expression, while his or her professional role is rooted in the authority or commissioning of one’s own tradition.
- Academic preparation from nationally accredited schools: In the highly professional peer environment within which these spiritual care providers work, possessing a graduate-level degree from nationally accredited academic institutions remains of paramount importance.
- Four units of CPE from CASC or ACPE centers: In the United States, APC, NACC, and NAJC remain committed to the requirement that spiritual care professionals receive clinical pastoral education in professional clinical settings that are recognized and accredited by the U.S. Department of Education.
- It adds competencies. It adds competencies based on the development and demands of the profession related to research literacy (ITP6), understanding organizational cultural and business principles and practices (OL3), a more expanded requirement to formulate and utilize, along with spiritual assessments, interventions, outcomes, and care plans that are all professional chaplain expectations for effective care (PPS10), greater self-examination (PIC1), and expanded group facilitation skills (PPS9).
- It provides greater content consistency and clarity of language. Several adjustments were made to the document for greater consistency and clarity, including terms used so that competencies can be utilized in diverse settings, with diverse care recipients and diverse faith groups.
2004: HISTORIC MEETING IN PORTLAND, MAINE
Four Foundational Documents Affirmed
On November 7, 2004, in Portland, Maine, the constituent boards of the Council on Collaboration (AAPC, ACPE, APC, CAPPE/ACPEP, NACC, NAJC*), met and affirmed four foundational documents:
- Common Standards for Professional Chaplaincy
- Common Standards for Pastoral Educators/Supervisors
- Common Code of Ethics for Chaplains, Pastoral Counselors, Pastoral Educators and Students
- Principles for Processing Ethical Complaints
Organizations that adhere to the national Common Professional Standards and Common Code of Ethics for professional chaplaincy
American Correctional Chaplains Association (ACCA): www.correctionalchaplains.org
American Association of Pastoral Counselors (AAPC): acpe.edu
Association for Clinical Pastoral Education, Inc. (ACPE): www.acpe.edu
Association of Professional Chaplains (APC): www.professionalchaplains.org
Board of Chaplaincy Certification, Inc (BCCI): www.professionalchaplains.org/bcci
Canadian Association for Spiritual Care (CASC/ACSS): www.spiritualcare.ca
National Association of Jewish Chaplains (NAJC): www.najc.org
National Association of Veterans Affairs Chaplains (NAVAC): www.navac.net
National Conference of Veterans Affairs Catholic Chaplains (NCVACC): www.ncvacc.net