The MA in Pastoral Theology at St. Gregory’s University uniquely unites a rigorous intellectual formation with meaningful pastoral instruction. This union of doctrine and practice is particularly endangered today, and our program seeks to recover the inseparable unity between truth and love, in order that our students may be authentic instruments of Church renewal and cultural transformation.
The MA in Pastoral Theology is ordered to the particular good of forming individuals for leadership in what Blessed Pope John Paul II called the “new evangelization”. Holistically formed in the timeless wisdom of the Church, a graduate of MA in Pastoral Theology program will come to appreciate the significance of the Faith as a living, organic, whole and learn to appropriate and transmit it as such with “new ardor, methods, and expressions” in ways that resonate powerfully with modern man.
In contrast to modern educational methods, which often commercialize education and train the student for a particular task, the MA in Pastoral Theology program at St. Gregory’s University seeks to foster and promote an authentic and integral humanism, which is founded upon a Christian anthropology, and ordered to wisdom, vivified by charity. Such a robust education is framed and supported by the following pedagogical principles:
- Truth is a good, that can be known, and once known it must be pursued;
- The pursuit of truth requires leisure, liberty (physical and moral), and actual contact with reality (scientia poetica)
- There can be no real contradiction between faith and reason;
- The end to which all education is ordered is wisdom – the synthesis of all truth, perfected in activity
These governing principles allow the student to not only learn the truths of the faith, but further, and more essentially, aids in the cultivation of the natural foundation that enables these truths to take root and to be lived out in meaningful and transformative ways.
University teaching and research, pursuit of a religious vocation (seminarian, deacon, priest, brother, sister), primary or secondary school religion teacher, catechist, director of religious education, pastoral associate, youth and young adult ministry, director of liturgy and music, family life ministry, Catholic journalism, social services director, hospital and prison ministry
The curriculum of the MA in Pastoral Theology reaches beyond the dichotomy between pragmatism and doctrinalism, back to the biblical unity in which practice and doctrine are one, a unity grounded in Christ. This requires a highly integrated program uniting five fundamental elements: philosophy, scripture, doctrine, history, and rhetoric. While these five elements animate the curriculum as a whole, individuals can specialize in a number of concentrations through particular electives.Possible areas of concentration may include: Catholic Education, Youth and Young Adult Ministry, Scripture, Pastoral Counseling and Catechesis.The degree consist of 42 credit hours (33 core credit hours plus 9 elective hours)
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Church and Modernity
Catholic Social Teaching
Vat II & the New Evang.
In addition to the robust intellectual formation, students in the MA in Pastoral Theology will also have the opportunity to participate in various cultural and social activities. These activities are integral to holistic formation of the program and include:
- Rome study abroad summer session
- Rich liturgical and sacramental opportunities
- Graduate club
- Various traditional festivities and feasts
Many of these activities are supported by the Center for the Renewal of Pastoral Theology. The Center is integrally united to the MA program in Pastoral Theology and its mission is to unify that which has been fragmented, namely the Church’s rich intellectual tradition with her pastoral concerns and practices. Ordered to this good the Center offers: (1) awards to individuals in recognition of their academic and/or practical contributions to the renewal of pastoral theology; (2) funding to graduate students enrolled in St. Gregory’s University’s Masters in Pastoral Ministry programming; (3) lectures and annual conferences that bring to the university leading scholars dedicated to the renewal of pastoral theology; and (4) a quarterly journal that is eminently speculative and practical, reserved for the strengthening and improving of current pastoral practices within the Church.
St. Gregory's University is committed to excellence in education through a faculty and staff dedicated to a quality learning experience that ensures the ultimate success of our graduates.
Designed for working professionals, the programs of our College for Continuing Studies emphasize the foundational values and ethical leadership essential to success in today's diverse society and expanding workplace. Coursework integrates ethics, critical thinking, problem solving, technology, and teamwork to form a critical base of knowledge and skills.
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