Todd Barton

Todd Barton was a worship leader for 20 years. Today Todd combines his love for God and fellowship with people to bring healing through Chaplaincy to dozens of businesses in Louisville Kentucky.

Christ is Using Chaplaincy in the Workplace

Todd Barton: Every day is a different day. You never know what you're going to walk into with this ministry. I think the value of an independent chaplain is just the consistency of having the same person come in every week and building trust with their employees. Most people I come in contact with in these businesses at least believe in something, at least believe in a God. They might not be churchgoers, they may not be believers or have a Christian faith or anything, but they have some kind of a belief.

Michael Prestigiacomo: Well, they brought it in 2006 as a Christian-based organization. I think they found an area that was a need as management. I know for me, we don't have all the answers and how to handle some of the stuff, and for us with Todd has been a huge help to be that extra hand. So I think that's, they just see the greater need for it.

Todd Barton: I've been doing this for 16 years now. I've never had anybody refuse an offer to pray for them, not one time, and it takes a good six months to a year to start building trust with employees when you start with a new client. But once you do that, they really welcome it.

The Greatest Benefit of All

Michael Prestigiacomo: Potential employees are always asking, what are your benefits? And we talk about health, vision, dental, but I always tell them that we have a pastoral care that comes around once a week comes to visit. I always explain to him, this is somebody that's here. I mean, my door's an open door policy in my department, but I don't know all the answers for you. I don't know how to get you there for everything, but he can help you with birth, death, divorce, drug addictions, anything that's going on that's extracurricular life things, which they're going to happen. We have that support there to try to help you along with it.

Todd Barton: I go to two or three companies a day through the week, and they get so used to whatever day that I'm there. They look forward to that. And I think a lot of times when people are just having some issues going on that really don't demand a professional counseling kind of thing, they'll just know, I know Todd's coming in Thursday morning and I'll just grab him when he's here. Another big one is just confidentiality. People going through stuff all the time, and they don't necessarily want to share that stuff with coworkers, definitely not their bosses, but if they have an individual who they know that they can share some things with, that's not going to go anywhere else. That's huge for them. 

Everybody sooner or later is going to go through life, and it's in those moments where a lot of people reach out to God or say, man, can we pray about this, or whatever. As a chaplain, I become a referral source for people who really need professional counseling. I'm not a professional counselor, but if we get into situations, marriage or whatever like that, or addictions or whatever, then if I can point them to the right direction, that's a huge help to them and help them find that person and also to keep them accountable for that as well.

Michael Prestigiacomo: I think for the overall most part, everybody really enjoys him. He's just got a great personality and he doesn't make you feel like you're in a therapy session or any of that stuff. He's just checking on you as a buddy and a friend.

Caring for Your People

Todd Barton: I think of myself more as an employee care provider, and what that means is sometimes putting the word pastor or chaplain as part of your title, that'll intimidate people. Or they may think, oh, this guy's going to come in every week and be a Bible thumper, and that's not the way I deal with that. I come in and I just try to care and that kind of a thing. So I think that kind of term just makes it more generic that he's just a care provider for our employees.

Michael Prestigiacomo: Any business that has people, we all have problems. We all have things going on and we all need support, and there's not a particular business. Every business has people, so any of 'em that have people bring him on, bring this process on to help 'em out. I mean, we've got so much going on in our world right now, extra effort. We all need a little bit of it, and this is a really a simple thing to give that extra pat on the back and boost.

Todd Barton: But if you're looking for a way to change the culture, if you're in a situation where you really want your employees to be cared for and feel valued, this is a great service to have to do that. Yeah, I love it. Absolutely love what I do.

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