The program offers support, education, and engagement in lay ministry. It introduces you to theological and ministerial knowledge and practice in the Augustinian tradition, which emphasizes the union of the mind and heart.
You will engage in these tasks with faculty dedicated to providing a Christian intellectual and moral environment; integrating contemporary thought, experience, and method in course work and ministerial practica; and teaching skills informed by the Augustinian tradition and rooted in Roman Catholic lay ecclesial ministry.
In this learning environment, students in our lay ministry programs pursue academic learning objectives similar to students in the master's program.
understand theological arguments and their significance for lay ministry;
- investigate the resources of the Christian ecclesiological and ministerial traditions in light of the questions raised by contemporary culture and the continuing challenges of human life;
- develop knowledge of biblical, historical, ecclesial, and theological perspectives on Christian ministry (with a primary but not exclusive focus on the Roman Catholic tradition);
- trace the continuity and changes in Christian ministry from biblical roots, through historical developments, to contemporary forms of practice;
- comprehend the Church’s teachings on the universal call to holiness, including the concept of baptismal vocation, and discern their pastoral application and relationship to the role of ministers as leaders in faith communities;
- demonstrate familiarity with academic practices of inquiry and discovery for professional ecclesial lay ministry;
- participate in systematic theological reflection on ministerial practice and experience and in systematic and critical reflection on one’s pastoral presence, skills, and gifts in ministerial service;
- engage their mind and deepen their Christian lives by integrating the speculative (mind) and practical (heart) in their theological and ministerial studies and practices;
- develop knowledge and skills in ecclesial ministry and value the Roman Catholic Augustinian tradition; advance academic ways of understanding Christian belief and practice by doing theology as “faith seeking understanding”, that is, as a critical, systematic reflection on the life of faith;
- recognize Christian theology as a living, enduring way of understanding that continues to be refined, developed, and extended as it engages the contemporary world;
- respond to Augustine’s call to the restless search for wisdom by responding to a relationship offered from beyond the boundaries of human existence;
- deliberate and form judgments about the implications of Christian moral principles for building a more just, sustainable and peaceful world;
- value pastoral practices that clarify the gospel for contemporary culture and promote the care of persons in the Church; and
- assume positions as productive, ethical, intellectual, and socially responsible citizens, leaders, teachers, and ministers.