Barbara Helms was enrolled in Canadian Armed Forces as a chaplain of the Muslim tradition on 11 October 2017. She will be serving with the 30th Field Artillery Regiment (33 Canadian Brigade Group, 4th Canadian Division). She is the first Muslim female Chaplain in the Canadian Armed Forces.
She holds a BA in Religious Studies and an MA in Islamic Studies (both from McGill), as well as a Masters in Counselling Psychology (Athabasca University).
She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Ministry degree (specializing in Muslim chaplaincy), conjointly offered through University of Toronto, Toronto School of Theology, and Emmanuel College.
Padre Helms has over ten years of experience working in interfaith ministries and is a Registered Psychotherapist (qualifying) through the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario as well as a Canadian Certified Counsellor with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association.
She is also engaged as a Chaplain one day a week at the Ottawa Muslim Association (OMA), and is Muslim Spiritual Advisor at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre.