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Three Avenues of MinistryHow to join the Reserve Chaplain Service Program


a. Do you want to serve with a local reserve unit and train one weekend a month? 

You'll want to consider the Category "A" Program (Cat A) — Chaplains and Assistants in this program serve at 42 units stationed in the United States. Most units are collocated on active Air Force bases; some are on Air Reserve bases; and a few are at local airports. The chaplain team has total responsibility for the chapel ministry in their unit, and train with their unit one weekend a month when the rest of the unit performs a Unit Training Assembly (UTA). For more information, click on of the subjects below.

Unit Chaplain Information                                                     Unit Chaplain Assistant

b. Do you want to serve part time in an active duty chapel on an active duty base? 

You'll want to consider the Category "B" Program (Cat B) — Chaplains and Assistants in this program serve at active duty bases in the United States for twelve Inactive Duty Training (IDT) days and one twelve day Annual Tour (AT) per year. They train and assist in ministry to that active duty community under the supervision of the active duty chaplain and enlisted supervisors.  For more information about Cat B programs, click on of the subjects below.

IMA Chaplain Information                                                     IMA Chaplain Assistant

c. Are you still preparing for ministry? 

The Chaplain Candidate Program might be for you — Chaplain Candidates are theological students who experience the life of an Air Force Chaplain while serving at an Active Duty Base during the summers of their graduate school education. 

                      Click here for more information about becoming a Chaplain Candidate


Chaplains work beyond the chapel wallsa. Personnel in each program attend the Chaplain Service Institute located at Maxwell AFB AL, within the first two years of coming on duty. Chaplains must attend a four-week Commissioned Officer Training Course and a six-week Chaplain Orientation Course at Maxwell AFB AL. Chaplain Assistants attend a six-week apprentice course at Maxwell AFB after completing their basic training. Assistants coming into the IMA program must have prior active duty service. 

Personnel in each program also perform a "two-week" Annual Tour (AT), either with their own unit or at an active duty base; in the latter case, almost anywhere in the world. 

Finally, personnel are expected to attend a conference of several days' duration, usually no more than once every two years.


All programs are administered from Headquarters, Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC/HC), 255 Richard Ray Blvd., Robins Air Force Base, Ga., 31098-1635, phone toll free 1-800-223-1784, ext 71475, or DSN 497-1475.


1. The unique satisfaction and opportunities of ministry in a military environment.
2. The rewards of being part of a 300-year heritage of service to our country and the defense of freedom.
3. The fellowship and growth that comes from working with clergy and people of various denominations and faith in an ecumenical setting.
4. Career development experiences that will enhance both your military and civilian ministries.
5. Pay and benefits commensurate with grade and time in service for both periods of inactive and active duty training.
6. The accumulation of points toward a USAF Reserve retirement at age 60 after at least twenty
satisfactory years of military service, active or reserve.
7. Life insurance up to $250,000.
8. Limited Commissary, medical/dental, recreational service and legal assistance benefits, plus full Base Exchange privileges.
9. The chance of traveling on military aircraft both in a duty and a Space-Available status.
10. The opportunity to explore your interest and suitability for full-time active duty chaplain ministry with a military service. 

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