Pastoral Theology

Pastoral Theology
Type of Degree: 
Master of Arts
Required Credits: 
42 hours
Average Time of Commitment/Completion: 
1.5 - 2 years

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:

  1. Truth is a good, that can be known, and once known it must be pursued;
  2. The pursuit of truth requires leisure, liberty (physical and moral), and actual contact with reality (scientia poetica)
  3. There can be no real contradiction between faith and reason;
  4. 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.

Examples Of Careers/Jobs That Are Suited To This Major: 

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

Examples Of This Major’s Core Classes: 

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)




Thomistic Philosophy
Systematic Theology
Church and Modernity
Sacramental Theology
Catholic Social Teaching


Moral Theology
Vat II & the New Evang.
Christian Spirituality
Catholic Apologetics
Special Activities/Opportunities You’ll Experience At St. Gregory’s: 

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
  • Retreats
  • Pilgrimages
  • Rich liturgical and sacramental opportunities
  • Conferences
  • Graduate club
  • Various traditional festivities and feasts
Our Commitment To You: 

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.

A degree from St. Gregory's University is valued and recognized throughout business and academic communities.

FOR MORE INFORMATION about becoming a Master of Arts in Pastoral Theology student, email us at