Chaplaincy Research

Click here to jump to the Research First Journal Club

Chaplaincy is a research-informed healthcare profession. The body of research on chaplaincy has been growing year on year, and chaplains are benefiting from insights published by both chaplain-researcher colleagues and others interested in understanding the relationship between spirituality and health.

Understandably, not all chaplains want to be researchers. But all chaplains need to be research literate, able to read and interpret current research and apply the findings of good research to their own practice. This page aims to be a resource to help colleagues develop that kind of research literacy.

The UK Chaplains’ Research Digest is a good place for College members to explore interesting new research. While being far from a comprehensive round up, it offers links to relevant research articles, as well as interviews and reviews that can help build research literacy.

The UK Wide Research First Digital Journal Club, which the college is pleased to support, is another way for colleagues to explore relevant new research. Scroll down for links to past articles discussed in the Club, together with video introductions that could stimulate research related discussions among local teams.

Look out for future developments to include online research literacy training on reading and assessing research papers.

Research Digests:


Link to e-book:

Link to training events:

Research First Journal Club

The college is delighted to support a monthly UK wide journal club that has developed from the digital journal club run as a joint venture by the CHCC and Free Churches Group (FCG) and is now supported and promoted by the Association of Hospice and Palliative Care Chaplains, NHS Education for Scotland and the Northern Ireland Healthcare Chaplains Association. As before the journal club will provide participants with the opportunity to earn up to 3 CPD points accredited by the UK Board of Healthcare Chaplaincy. Meeting more frequently will help build research literacy. It will mean that more articles are discussed over the year and that there won’t be a six month gap between Club meetings if you cannot make one of the sessions. It is called the Research First Journal Club because the group will meet on the first Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of a month on a rolling pattern. Date from September are:

  • September: Tuesday 6th, 10:00 to 11:15. Click here to join the meeting (recurring 3 monthly meeting)
  • October: Wednesday 5th, 12:45 to 14:00. Click here to join the meeting (recurring 3 monthly meeting)
  • November: Thursday 3rd, 15:15 to 16:30. Click here to join the meeting (recurring 3 monthly meeting)
  • December: Tuesday 6th, 10:00 to 11:15.
  • January: Wednesday 4th, 12:45 to 14:00.
  • February: Thursday 2nd, 15:15 to 16:30.
  • March: Tuesday 7th, 10:00 to 11:15.
  • April: Wednesday 5th, 12:45 to 14:00.
  • May: Thursday 4th, 15:15 to 16:30.

 To earn up to three CPD points, read the assigned paper (details will be in the Narrative information digest curated on behalf of the profession by the FCG, be included in the UK Chaplains’ Research Digest and circulated by the different organisations involved.) Using this Research Article Reflection Sheet complete Part 1 (one CPD hour) before the session, use this summary when you join the Journal Club (one CPD hour) and after the meeting, complete Part 2 with your reflections on your learning (one CPD hour). To receive a certificate of CPD achievement, email your completed Research Article Reflection Sheet to the journal club presenter.

  • If you have questions about the Journal Club, or would like to receive diary invites for the sessions please contact
  • Video introductions to the papers discussed in the Journal Club are available here, as are links to the papers; so if you missed the live Journal Club, you can use the links to catch up or even arrange your own Journal Club.

NB – CHCC members have free online access to the Health and Social Care Chaplaincy journal.  Instructions on how to register for free access are in the Members Area, and require you to log in to view them.

18 January 3:15-4:30pm

Skinner M et al: How do healthcare chaplaincy spiritual care interventions support adults’ mental health by integrating health and social care? A review of primary research studies published in English 2010-2019. Health and Social Care Chaplaincy, 10(1), 27–49.

Click here for the Video

20 April 3:15-4:30pm

Schuhmann CM et al (2021) Humanist chaplaincy according to Northwestern European Humanist Chaplains: Towards a framework for understanding chaplaincy in secular societies. Journal of Health Care Chaplaincy, 27(4), 207-221.

Click here for the Video