Prison Chaplaincy Aotearoa
Churches formed a charitable trust known as the Prison Chaplaincy Service of Aotearoa New Zealand (PCSANZ) in 2000 that is responsible for the management of prison chaplains that provide religious and spiritual services to prisoners in New Zealand prisons under contract to the Department of Corrections. The organisation changed its name to Tira Tūhāhā Prison Chaplaincy Aotearoa (TTPCA) in early 2022.
TTPCA is governed by a Board comprising representatives from the Anglican Church in Aotearoa New Zealand and Polynesia, the Associated Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand, the Baptist Churches of New Zealand Ko Ngā Hāhi Iriri o Aotearoa, the Methodist Church of New Zealand Te Haahi Weteriana o Aotearoa, The Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand, The Roman Catholic Church of New Zealand, The Salvation Army Te Ope Whakaora, and Te Runanga Whakawhanaunga i ngā Hāhi o Aotearoa and up to five nominated members.
We aim to offer every prisoner life-transforming hope through the love of God.
Our chaplains see prison chaplaincy as a ‘holistic ministry’ providing for the spiritual, cultural and social needs of all prisoners. Prison chaplain’s therefore have a mission in service to the whole of life; with a theological mandate. A prison chaplain’s role is to journey with prisoners, as they encounter the challenges of incarceration and separation from loved ones and whānau.
The origin of ‘Chaplain’
The origin of the term Chaplain comes from the French word Chappelle; which is a coat or a covering. The term originates from the old Christian story of St Martin who offered his Chappelle (coat) to someone in deep distress and gave him a covering, lifesaving protection: in a similar manner to the parable of the Good Samaritan; offering kindness, compassion and a Christ-like presence, journeying alongside those in need.