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Clergy  What They Do

Just the Facts


Conducts religious worship and performs other spiritual functions associated with beliefs and practices of religious faith or denomination. Provides spiritual and moral guidance and assistance to members.

This career is part of the Human Services cluster Family and Community Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Prays and promotes spirituality.
  • Reads from sacred texts such as the Bible, Torah, or Koran.
  • Prepares and delivers sermons or other talks.
  • Organizes and leads regular religious services.
  • Plans or leads religious education programs.
  • Instructs people who seek conversion to a particular faith.
  • Counsels individuals or groups concerning their spiritual, emotional, or personal needs.
  • Administers religious rites or ordinances.
  • Devises ways in which congregational membership can be expanded.
  • Visits people in homes, hospitals, or prisons to provide them with comfort and support.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Catholic Priest --
  • Children's Minister --
  • Confessor --
  • Congregational Care Pastor --
  • Minister --
  • Missionary Coordinator --
  • Pastor -- Provides spiritual oversight and leadership direction to church leaders and the congregation. He is to preach, disciple, evangelize, lead in the sacraments, and counsel those in need.
  • Priest --
  • Rabbi --
  • Rector --