Master of Arts in Catholic Studies  

Seminarians complete the Master of Arts in Catholic Studies during their Discipleship Stage. 

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Master of Divinity  

The Master of Divinity degree is professional in orientation. It encompasses both intellectual and pastoral formation in preparation for ordained ministry. These two components, while distinct, are integrated throughout the entire program and are directed toward a single goal: that seminarians, as persons of faith, acquire through study, research and pastoral supervision the knowledge, skills and experience necessary for priestly ministry in the Church. The program’s purpose is to assist the student in the integration of the above in such a way that he can minister in the Catholic Church as a qualified, learned and committed priest. 

The Master of Divinity degree consists of a four-year academic curriculum with seminary residence. There is a possibility of a supervised pastoral internship year at the discretion of the seminarian’s bishop; ordinarily, the internship year occurs following the second year of theology. It separates the four-year academic program into two phases. 

In the first two years, the seminarian is introduced to that knowledge and ministerial experience which is considered foundational for the study of theology and a successful internship. In the final two years, he is encouraged to take advantage of the elective program in such a way as to develop his own ministerial identity and competency. Seminarians can also apply for a Master of Arts degree (Biblical Studies or Theology) during these final two years.

The Master of Divinity requires 110 credit hours, of which 24 may be applied towards a second degree (either the Master of Arts, Biblical Studies or the Master of Arts, Theology). Students must maintain a 2.5 GPA in order to be in good standing. After completing all course requirements, students must pass an oral case study examination integrating theological, pastoral, and professional skills. 

Biblical Studies: 23 credit hours 

  • B 510 Biblical Hermeneutics and Pentateuch (3 credits)
  • B 521 Historical Themes and Wisdom Literature (3 credits)
  • B 541 Prophets (3 credits)
  • B 614 Gospels of Mark and Matthew (3 credits)
  • B 619 Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles (3 credits)
  • B 621 Pauline Literature (3 credits)
  • B 637 Catholic Epistles (2 credits)
  • B 641 Johannine Literature (3 credits)
  • Catholic Studies: 3 credit hours
  • CS 600 History Of Christian Spirituality (3 credits)

Church History: 11 credit hours

  • H 511 Patristic Theology (3 credits)
  • H 520 Early And Medieval Church History (3 credits)
  • H 640 Reformation And Modern History (3 credits)
  • H 651 Church In The U.S. (2 credits) 

Liturgy And Sacraments: 23 credit hours 

  • LS 600 Theology Of Liturgy (3 credits)
  • LS 612 Principles of Sacramental Theology (3 credits)
  • LS 620 Theology of the Eucharist (3 credits)
  • LS 630 Theology of Marriage (2 credits)
  • LS 641 Theology and Spirituality of Holy Orders (3 credits)
  • LS 652 Theology of Penance and Anointing of the Sick (2 credits)
  • LS 740 Practicum: Mass And Chant (3 credits)
  • LS 752 Practicum: Penance and Anointing of the Sick (1 credit)
  • LS 770 Blessings and Celebrating/Preaching the Rites (3 credits) 

Moral Theology: 10 credit hours 

  • MT 500 Fundamental Moral Theology (3 credits) 
  • MT 560 Catholic Sexual Ethics (2 credits) 
  • MT 580 Catholic Medical Ethics (2 credits) 
  • MT 600 Catholic Social Doctrine (3 credits) 

Pastoral & Professional Studies: 20 credit hours 

  • P 710 Principles Of Catechesis (2 credits) 
  • P 720 Pastoral Counseling (3 credits) 
  • P 730 Introduction To Canon Law (2 credits) 
  • P 735 Marriage Law In Canon Law (2 credits) 
  • P 749 Pastoral Leadership (2 credits) 
  • P 750 Theology of Preaching (3 credits) 
  • P 751 Preaching At Sunday Mass (3 credits) 
  • P 770 Liturgical Music & Vocal Skills (3 credits) 

Systematic Theology: 20 credit hours 

  • S 541 Fundamental Dogma (3 credits) 
  • S 553 Theology of the Trinity (3 credits) 
  • S 560 Christology (3 credits) 
  • S 591 Christian Anthropology (3 credits) 
  • S 611 Ecclesiology I: The Church (3 credits) 
  • S 612 Ecclesiology II: Ecumenism, Mission And Evangelization (2 credits) 
  • S 639 Mariology And Eschatology (3 credits) 

Seminarians have the option to complete the Master of Arts in Biblical Studies or Catholic Theology while working on their Master of Divinity. 

They will complete the above, plus the following: 

Master of Divinity plus Master of Arts, Biblical Studies: 122 credits

  • HEB 301-302 Hebrew I & II (4 credits) or GRK 301-302 Biblical Greek I & II (4 credits)
  • Elective in Scripture, Catholic Studies, or Systematic Theology (2 credits)
  • MA 696 Research Seminar (2 credits)
  • MA 697 Directed Research (2 credits)
  • MA 698 Thesis (2 credits)
  • MA 699 Thesis Defense (0 credits; Pass/Fail) 

Master of Divinity plus Master of Arts, Theology: 122 credits

  • Electives in Catholic Studies or Systematic Theology (6 credits)
  • MA 696 Research Seminar (2 credits)
  • MA 697 Directed Research (2 credits)
  • MA 698 Thesis (2 credits)
  • MA 699 Thesis Defense (0 credits; Pass/Fail) 

Seminarian Homiletics Formation

The formation program at MTSM includes three courses dedicated to preaching. The first course, Theology of Preaching, taken in the second year of the Configuration Stage, gives the seminarian a foundational knowledge of the Catholic principles of preaching and instruction and evaluation in the actual art of preaching. The second course, taken in a seminarian’s third year of Configuration, Blessings and Celebrating/Preaching the Rites, provides an opportunity for the seminarian on the cusp of diaconate ordination the chance to engage the art of preaching from the perspective of celebrating Baptisms, Weddings, and Funerals. The final course, Preaching at Sunday Mass, is a practicum course for transitional deacons in the Synthesis Stage. This course aims to make candidates for the priesthood aware of the rhythm and demands of weekly preaching. This goal is achieved by assigning them to parishes where they will preach regularly at Sunday Masses under the supervision of the pastor and/or parochial vicar. The transitional deacon also works with parishioners to examine and reflect upon the scriptures and elicit their feedback in evaluating his preaching. 

Sacramental Lab

To aid the liturgical and homiletical formation of future priests, MTSM is outfitted with a classroom lab space that includes professional-grade audio/visual technology to record and review mock liturgical celebrations and homilies. The courses that utilize the Sacramental Lab include all of the preaching courses, as well as the Mass and Chant Practicum course. The recordings are uploaded to an internal server that the seminarian and course professor can access for evaluative purposes. The technology in the lab allows for multiple camera angles and multiple sound inputs to capture the video and audio needed to provide a comprehensive analysis. Seminarians in the last year of Configuration and the start of the Synthesis Stage have the opportunity to schedule time outside of class to reserve the lab to practice the various rites and homilies they are preparing.