Purpose of the St. Francois County Sheriff’s Department Chaplaincy Division:
It is the policy of the St. Francois County Sheriff’s Department to make counseling and pastoral services available to officers, their families, other departmental members, and citizens of this community through the Sheriff’s Department Chaplain’s Program, whenever such services are requested. No one is confronted with more situations that demoralize and create emotional, mental and spiritual burdens than today’s law enforcement officer. These burdens also affect the officer’s family and other members of the department. Law enforcement agencies need the specialized guidance, counseling and assistance that Law Enforcement Chaplains can provide.
What is a Chaplain? A law enforcement chaplain is a clergy person with a passionate interest in, and the specialized training for pastoral care in the dangerous world of law enforcement. The Law Enforcement Chaplain is ready to serve those in need. The chaplain’s ministry provides a source of strength to the law enforcement officers and their families, other department members, and the community. Chaplains listen and participate in the workplace of law enforcement officers with empathy and experience, advising calmly in the midst of turmoil and danger and offering assistance when appropriate or requested.
What Does a Sheriff Department Chaplain Do? The duties of the Chaplain may include, but are not limited to:
- Accompanying a police officer to assist with notification of any suicide, death or serious injury.
- Working with police officers to assist in any kind of crisis situation where the presence of a trained chaplain might help.
- Counseling department members in response to stress or family crisis problems. Any such assistance will be privileged and confidential between the officer and chaplain involved.
- Visiting with sick or injured members of the Department at their home or in the hospital.
- Offering prayers at special occasions such as graduations, award ceremonies and dedications of buildings, etc.
- Assisting the Sheriff’s Department in the performance of appropriate ceremonial functions. Ride alongs
- Providing practical assistance to victims.
- Assisting at suicide incidents.
- Chaplains ride along with Deputies for several reasons: Creates an avenue for Chaplains and Deputies to build relationships, allows officers privacy to talk to Chaplain and the Chaplain can gain the trust and acceptance of the officers.
- Serving as part of a crisis response team (only after the appropriate, specialized training).
- Assisting Deputies with hostage negotiation (only after the appropriate, specialized training).
Who is the Chaplain? Chaplain Darryl Rhodes has been trained and earned his Master certification through the International Conference of Police Chaplains (www.icpc4cops.org) and has been a member of ICPC since 1998. He has been trained in such areas as Officer Injury and Death, Suicide, CISM certified, Responding to Terrorism/Crisis/Disasters, Responding to School Violence, Death Notifications. Chaplain Rhodes has been with the SFCSD since 1994. Recently, Rev. Jeff Hawks became an Assistant Chaplain to assist in the duties of a Law Enforcement Chaplain in 2021. He is still in training and doing a great job.