While Chaplains have been long associated with hospitals, correctional facilities, universities, and the military, more and more non-traditional organizations are seeing the need for chaplains in the workplace. So many in fact, that Marketplace Chaplains, the country’s largest and original workplace chaplaincy provider, has signed a record number of more than 100 new client companies in 2013. There are as many new companies as there are different types and industries. Companies utilizing the service range from private country clubs, law firms and model train hobby stores, to oil and gas camps, barge/tugboat services and Potash mines.
Chaplains began to appear in the workplace in the early 20th century, as the United Auto Workers, among others, built the use of chaplains into their contract with General Motors and other automakers.
“The chaplains come by once a week to check on me and see how I’m doing and to see if I have any concerns or needs,” said Courtney Connell, Head Golf Professional at Mira Vista Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas.
Mike Bassett, owner and partner for The Bassett Firm in Dallas, Texas, began utilizing the chaplain service in 2008 and said “They help us in a variety of ways, from increasing morale, and being an outside resource for helping and encouraging the staff, to undergirding a moral and ethical tone for practicing law.”
The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina, one of the largest tourism attractions in the US, has also seen the need for chaplains for their employees and their guests since 2007. “I believe employees are the company’s greatest asset, and providing them strong leadership, support and a long-term strategy for growth is my goal,” said Biltmore CEO Bill Cecil, the great great-grandson of the original owner. “We give them tools to do things well.”
Since 1984, Marketplace Chaplains has provided the unique and strategic initiative of chaplains to companies. Currently, Marketplace has nearly 3,000 corporate caregivers serving more than 558,000 client company employees and their family members in more than 3,100 service locations, through 23 different industry types. In the U.S. alone, Marketplace Chaplains serve in 44 states and 982 cities.
“It’s certainly gratifying that we can serve such a wide variety of businesses whose visionary leaders actively seek to take care of the needs of their employees and family members in these often stressful and demanding times,” said Richard S. De Witt President and COO of Marketplace Chaplains.