The R-2 visa category is for foreign nationals who enter the United States temporarily to be employed at least part time (average of at least 20 hours per week) by a non-profit
religious organization in the United States (or an organization which is affiliated with the religious denomination in the United States).  The R-1 visa holder must enter the U.S. to work as a or in a religious vocation or occupation.

R-1 Criteria

To qualify, the foreign national must have been a member of a religious denomination having a bona fide non-profit religious organization in the United States for at least 2 years immediately preceding the filing of the petition.

Every petition for an R-1 worker must be filed by a prospective or existing U.S. employer.

There are certain requirements which must be satisfied by the petitioning organization as well as by the religious worker, the beneficiary of the petition.