The Chaplaincy program's purpose is to serve and assist the Sheriff in helping to meet the spiritual needs of the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office personnel, families, and the community. The Sheriff's Chaplain offers spiritual guidance and assistance to Sheriff's personnel in crisis situations. He also serves as a link in the communication between personnel in crisis and their own spiritual advisors.
The Santa Clara County Sheriff's Chaplaincy Program is an innovative approach to meeting several needs in our community. The Sheriff's Chaplain is appointed by the Sheriff and works with the Chaplain's Liaison Officer.
Each day, the law enforcement officers are faced with potentially dangerous situations. They must make split-second decisions that are just and right. Many times, law enforcement officers need to express their frustrations and problems to one who fully understands the circumstances surrounding their duties and obligations. Law enforcement officers need, at times, to discuss their problems with someone who understands, yet is detached enough not to become emotionally involved.
The law enforcement officer's clergy person or religious advisor, although trained in the ministry, is not necessarily abreast of the particular problems of a law enforcement officer. In such cases, a law enforcement chaplain could listen with empathy, advise calmly and offer assistance when appropriate.
On call 24 hours a day, law enforcement chaplains stand ready to respond. A key word is "service" and law enforcement chaplains pride themselves that they respond when a law enforcement officer is seriously injured or some other incident occurs where their presence is needed and requested.
It is first of all a means of providing support and assistance to the Department members and their families.
It also provides an added dimension to police work in making immediately available to people in crisis situations a trained and caring professional who can assist in times of loss, confusion, depression or grief. These calls are often as appropriate for a chaplain as for an officer.
Our Police Chaplaincy Program can also provide a means for the churches in the community to reach out to those in need by having experienced and trained persons available to care for peoples' needs and to serve as a liaison between people and resources already in place.
International Conference Of Police Chaplains
PCLEC Chaplains attend regional and national training seminars sanctioned by the International Conference of Police Chaplains, and are "certified" by them as either Basic, Senior, or Master level Chaplains.
How the program works
The Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office sponsors the Sheriff's Chaplaincy Program. A trained Chaplain is on call 24 hours a day to be of assistance to the Sheriff's Office and to individual personnel, whenever needed. The Chaplaincy Program is coordinated by Father Paul Weisbeck.
If you have any questions or comments about the Chaplaincy Program, you can call Lt. Jose Salcido (Chaplaincy Liaison Officer) at 408-299-8892 (work), 408-421-6733 (cell) or 408-420-7378 (cell) or direct your questions to Sheriff Laurie Smith.
You can also contact us via US mail at:
Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office
55 W. Younger Ave.
San Jose, CA 95110