The Catholic University of America
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Certificate in Pastoral Ministry

Pastoral Studies for Undergraduates

Click HERE for Downloadable Application Form

Preparation for Ministry


Through coursework, workshops and supervised ministry, CUA undergraduate pastoral ministry students prepare for work as catechists, religion teachers, youth ministers and campus ministers, in ecclesial and not-for-profit organizations

The undergraduate program in pastoral ministry at CUA offers a two-year certificate, a minor and a major in pastoral ministry within a four-year bachelor's degree, and a post-baccalaureate degree option. The certificate program meets requirements for ministry certification in most dioceses in the United States.1 The bachelor's and post-baccalaureate degrees offer students opportunities to study broadly in religion with a focus on pastoral ministry

 

Who Studies Pastoral Ministry?


Among students who follow the pastoral ministry program are those who

  • Wish to major or minor in theology and religious studies
  • Desire to serve the Church
  • Have a basic knowledge of Catholicism and want to grow in faith
  • Possess the skills needed to communicate and to relate well to others
  • Are motivated to commit the necessary time for training, education and reflection on their ministry experiences.
  • Seek certified recognition of readiness for ministry

 

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

Academic Courses


Program for Minors - 18 credit hours

A total of six courses.

  • TRS 201 Faith Seeking Understanding
  • TRS 355 The Mission of the Contemporary Catholic
  • TRS 357 Foundations of Religious Education/Catechesis -- or -- TRS 359 Teenagers: The Church Today and Tomorrow (for those specifically preparing for youth ministry)
  • TRS 453 The Practice of Pastoral Ministry
  • TRS 495 Internship in Pastoral Studies/theological reflection
  • One TRS elective at any level
     

Program for Majors - 36 credit hours

A total of 12 courses.

  • TRS 355 The Mission of the Contemporary Catholic
  • TRS 357 Foundations of Religious Education/Catechesis -- or -- TRS 359 Teenagers: The Church Today and Tomorrow (for those specifically preparing for youth ministry)
  • TRS 453 The Practice of Pastoral Ministry
  • TRS495 Internship in Pastoral Studies/theological reflection
  • Four required CPM courses are taken as electives in the TRS major

 

Internship



Internships in academically supervised field work in a parish or nonprofit organization require approximately 15 hours a week and are assigned an academic grade at completion. Eligible juniors and seniors register for a TRS internship course. The coordinator of the certificate program arranges for the student to work under the supervision of a member of the professional staff. The academic grade is based on the professional staff's assessment of the student's work and the student's personal theological reflection papers in connection with the seminar. Sponsoring parishes for the internship program are located in Washington, D.C., and nearby Maryland and Virginia.

 

The Undergraduate Certificate Program


The certificate program provides students with an academic foundation, faith formation and the skills for ministry, including the following:

  • Biblical, liturgical and theological studies
  • Growth in personal faith, maturity and a sense of mission
  • Capacity for theological reflection
  • Skills in designing, administering and assessing catechetical programs
  • An understanding and appreciation of the cultural contexts of ministry

 

To Apply


You may download an application form by clicking HERE. Mail the completed application along with a letter of recomendation from a pastor or teacher to:

The Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Studies
School of Theology and Religious Studies
The Catholic University of America
Washington DC 20064

 

  1. CUA's Pastoral Ministry Certification Program adheres to the National Certification Standards for Lay Ecclesial Ministers as developed by the National Association for Lay Ministry (NALM), National Conference for Catechetical Leadership (NCCL), National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry (NFCYM), and National Association of Pastoral Musicians (NPM) and as approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Commission on Certification and Accreditation.