- My Local
- My Reach
- My Self
Police, firefighters, and correctional officers are by nature untrusting individuals. They are the ones who take care of others in a crisis and because of their being very capable, are not likely to reach out when they are in trouble. They are frequently placed under a tremendous amount of stress, often making split-second decisions that may affect people for the rest of their lives. They are intimately familiar with trauma, and many suffer from PTSD. In addition, they are under a great deal of scrutiny because of what they do. These conditions can create questions as to the why of life, who is really in charge, is there any ultimate justice, and why do I feel compassion fatigue. These are prime opportunities to connect with people at a more meaningful, spiritual level and share God's good news.
Victims of traumatic events often need assurance and grief coaching to get them through their ordeal and to find ultimate meaning in life.
After seeing a need, Jim began serving as Chaplain to the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety, the surrounding community, and more recently to the California State Correctional System. As a chaplain, Jim serves the fire and police in stressful situations such as suicides and domestic violence, when on a call, and/or afterward doing a debriefing. In addition, the transition from a first responder's professional life to their personal lives is often difficult. Jim is available to the officers, firefighters, and others associated with the Department of Public Safety and their families. “I make every effort to be available, to listen and share in the sorrows and joys of both individual officers and the department as a whole."
Whether it's death notifications, marriage counseling, or officiating ceremonies, Jim often serves the needs at the moment. Another component of chaplaincy is being available to the community. Frequent calls to high-stress incidents put chaplains like Jim in a position to provide moral support for people who are facing life-altering situations. In addition, through mutual aid, Jim has served at wildfires throughout California.
Jim has served as InFaith field staff since January 2017.
Jim was married to Karen Asselin in 1991. They have five children. With his wife and—at the time—three children, Jim served in Peru for three years, helping to start and build a K-12 school. Karen is a teacher, and Jim has served as a pastor at Trinity Church of Sunnyvale for 13 years. Jim has extensive construction experience, is a licensed Contractor, and is a P.O.S.T. certified member of the International Conference of Police Chaplains. His hobbies include music and spending time outdoors.