Interreligious Chaplaincy Program

Interreligious Chaplaincy: Program Overview

Welcoming first cohort of students in Fall 2020

The first of its kind, the GTU’s interreligious chaplaincy program equips leaders to practice spiritual care among diverse populations. The program offers students the opportunity to earn a Certificate in Interreligious Chaplaincy, as well as an MA in Islamic, Jewish or Hindu Studies--religious traditions underrepresented among institutional chaplains. The certificate will also be open to students who have previously earned a qualifying master’s degree. The program is scheduled to welcome its first cohort of students in Fall 2020. 

Spiritual care is a vital need across industries, including hospitals, universities, military, government, immigration, family and social services, incarceration, disaster relief, organizational and rehabilitation contexts. This program provides the skills to effectively serve persons from diverse religious backgrounds in a wide variety of situations and life stages. Coursework will incorporate practical spiritual care and interreligious training, as well counseling, theology, and ethics. The certificate fulfills requirements for board certification to practice chaplaincy, but also provides spiritual caregiving skills that can be applied outside the context of traditional chaplaincy.

Students interested in the combined MA and certificate should apply to the GTU MA program, indicating their interest in pursuing the certificate in interreligious chaplaincy along with an MA in Jewish, Islamic, or Hindu Studies. Students seeking to enter the certificate program who already possess a qualifying master’s degree, or who are currently enrolled in the MA program at the GTU, should use the "certificate" section of the application. Begin your application now. 

“The Interreligious Chaplaincy program will prepare students of Jewish, Muslim, and Hindu traditions for careers in spiritual care where they are grounded in their faith and competent to care for diverse communities. The impact of this program, and the work of the leaders it will train, will be felt locally and internationally.”
Dr. Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, Director
GTU Interreligious Chaplaincy Program

One Program: Two Tracks

The Interreligious Chaplaincy Program allows students to pursue a certificate in interreligious chaplaincy along with an MA in Jewish, Hindu, or Islamic Studies--or as a stand-alone certificate.

Course Requirements

The Certificate in Interreligious Chaplaincy is a 24-credit program that includes coursework in theology, ethics, spiritual care, and chaplaincy practices, as well as Clinical Pastoral Education  

GTU Centers

The Interreligious Chaplaincy Certificate can be pursued alongside a GTU MA in association with our Centers for Jewish Studies, Islamic Studies, or Dharma Studies 


For more information on the Interreligious Chaplaincy program, contact Dr. Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, program director, at For infomation about applying to the GTU, contact

Webinar: New Initiatives in International Chaplaincy Education

What are new initiatives in chaplaincy eduction? How do they challenge traditional models of spiritual care? Join Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, Director of Interreligious Chaplaincy, as he answers these questions in a free online webinar.

Online Event