Fingerprinting and Background Check Policies

Providing a safe place is essential to the fulfillment of the Church’s mission of reconciliation. One of the outward and visible signs of that safety is the care with which we screen, call and employ suitable persons to carry out this ministry.

All applications, fingerprinting, and reference checks must be conducted PRIOR to the beginning of service in the diocese, any parish/mission, or Episcopal school.

Who must be fingerprinted:

  • Clergy (full and part time, canonically resident, licensed or supply) and complete an employee application found at the link below.
  • All church employees over the age of 18 years old (regardless of the number hours worked), including St. Columba employees. All employees under the age of 18 years old will be required to complete a background check using a form which includes a release signed by a parent or guardian.  An employee is anyone who receives a paycheck or is regularly remunerated.
  • Volunteer youth ministry leader (for churches that do not employ one)
  • School teachers and other employees of an Episcopal school
  • Daycare workers
  • Nursery workers
  • Mothers’/Parents’ Day Out workers
  • Volunteer coaches for any Parish/Mission or Episcopal school

All records of fingerprinting will be maintained in the Diocesan office and where the person serves. Access to the records will be limited and only individuals with a need to know the results of the background screen will be provided access.

Persons fingerprinted will not be required to be fingerprinted again for as long as they are continuously employed or volunteer.

Steps for Fingerprinting

Please complete all steps.

  • Read instructions for making an appointment for fingerprinting by clicking below.  Be sure to enter the correct code number as shown in the instructions.
  • Complete an application of employment for all lay employees and new clergy or an application designed for volunteers on the approved forms.
  • VECHS waiver from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation must be signed and returned to the diocesan office electronically to Alisa Kelly, Canon for Finance and Administration, at  No fingerprint results will be provided until the Waiver is received.  The Diocesan Office will return the results of the fingerprint record.
  • Check all references of the individual before beginning any work or volunteer activities. If an employee or volunteer, in connection with their responsibilities in the Church, will be involved in any way in the finances of the organization for which they volunteer or will be employed, they must undergo a credit check conducted by Oxford Documents Management.  

If the employee will be driving any vehicle as a part of their responsibilities, a driving record check will be conducted Oxford Document Management.  Please contact Canon Sharon Alexander ( with the employee’s full name and email address to begin either the credit check or driving record check. The Diocese requires that all background checks and applications should be placed in an employee’s personnel file and maintained for all volunteers.

This memorandum applies to any entity that operates on any property under the authority of the Bishop of West Tennessee and employs anyone in any of the above listed categories.

Questions? Please contact Canon Sharon Alexander: