Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York

For information on the Doctor of Ministry program please contact:
Office of the School 


DOCTOR OF MINISTRY Curriculum (36 CREDITS beyond the MDiv or its equivalent)
A. Core Studies (21 credits):
B. Electives (15 credits): 
A. Core Studies (21 credits)
B. Electives (15 credits)
3. LATINO STUDIES CONCENTRATION (36 credits) (Coordinator, Fr. Claudio M. Burgaleta, S.J., Ph.D.)
A. Required Courses (21 credits)
B. Electives (15 credits)
C. Dissertation or Project

Program Objectives

The goal of the Doctor of Ministry degree offered at Fordham University is to provide advanced understanding of the nature and purposes of religious ministry, increased competencies in pastoral analysis and ministry skills, sustained theological reflection on the practice of ministry, and new knowledge about the practice of ministry.   The program, combining theory and pastoral practice, strives for the integration of theological and social science knowledge to advance excellence in religious ministry. The purpose of the program is to enhance the general practice of ministry in its many forms as well as provide expertise in specialized areas of ministerial practice.

In keeping with Fordham University’s Jesuit mission the program gives special, though not exclusive, attention to the Christian and Catholic religious tradition. A major concern of the program, in keeping with the mission of Jesuit education, is to explore the social role that religious ministry can play in dealing with cultural and theological issues.

The D.Min. degree is designed to prepare reflective and competent professionals for positions of leadership in religious ministry.  The program strives to discover and nurture sound scholarship, meaningful research, and the interdependence of theory and practice.  The D.Min. is conferred on the basis of scholarship, research skills and practical application demonstrated by the student’s course work, examinations, doctoral dissertation and ministerial experience.



The D.Min. program offers an advanced level of study in pastoral and practical theology and involves their integration with religious ministry.  The curriculum also focuses on the acquisition of skills and competencies in pastoral practice and research.  A doctoral level dissertation serves as the capstone for the student’s program.

Various kinds of learning comprise the program of studies: lectures, readings, community, discussions, self-directed learning, peer learning, library research, workshops, experiential learning and E-learning.  Close attention is also given to the various contexts in which students exercise their religious ministries.

The D.Min. program includes the designing, writing and presentation of a doctoral level dissertation or project that deals in a significant manner with theory and practice of ministry.  This work should reach the level where it contributes to the practice of ministry and is applicable to other ministerial situations.  To complete this work each student identifies a ministerial issue, conducts the necessary research using appropriate methodology, and presents a practical proposal for dealing with the issue.  Doctoral dissertations are evaluated by a committee, presented orally, placed in the university library, as well as in Dissertation Abstracts. 

The D.Min. program requires that students take a minimum of 36 advanced credits beyond the Master of Divinity or its equivalent as well as complete a doctoral dissertation or project.  Twenty one credits are taken in a required core of courses; 15 credits are in either additional required courses or electives.  Normally, the degree requires not less than two and no more than six years to complete.

All D.Min. students are required to register for the D.Min. “Maintenance of Matriculation” after completion of all coursework. D.Min. students enroll each semester until they have either defended their dissertation or presented their final project.


Admission to the D Min. program requires the possession of Master of Divinity degree or its educational equivalent.  Generally, equivalency is assessed as tantamount to 36 graduate credits in theological or religious studies (typically 15 credits in Scripture, 15 credits in doctrinal or systematic theology, and 6 credits in other areas of theology or religious studies).  Students who do not have this background are advised to take such courses in the GSRRE, the Department of Theology of Fordham University, or other graduate theological programs.  The practice of ministry is not considered an equivalent substitute for the Master of Divinity degree.

To be admitted to the program applicants should normally have had three years of experience in ministry after their first theological degree.  They should also manifest the capacity for an advanced level of competence in and reflection on religious ministry. Admission of candidates to the D.Min. is determined by the D.Min. Committee, which is comprised of the dean, director and D.Min. faculty members.  Admission to the D.Min. is selective and offered only to those students who have demonstrated the requisite intellectual ability, academic and ministerial preparation, and motivation.

Those applying for admissions are expected to have a B+ average in their Master’s program.  They must supply a copy of their college, seminary, and graduate school transcripts as well as two letters of recommendation, one from a professor with whom they have studied and one from a ministerial supervisor.  Applicants must also submit a statement of purpose for seeking the degree; an outline is provided in the online application. In addition: a writing sample of 10-25 pages must be submitted to the review committee.  This should be in the form of a research paper that the applicant has completed during previous graduate study. 

Application is done fully online APPLY HERE.

A strict admissions deadline has not been set, as this program review committee will continue to review applications on a rolling basis during the 2013-2014 academic year.
  Each student accepted into the program is assigned an advisor who guides the student in academic and career matters.  Students are expected to maintain a B+ grade point average during the entire period of their doctoral studies.  Mentors and readers for doctoral dissertations and projects are decided upon by students in consultation with prospective mentors and readers. The mentor must be chosen from the D.Min. faculty. Readers may be chosen from within or outside of the D.Min. faculty.

Doctor of Ministry Faculty

C. Colt Anderson, PhD, Dean. B.A. University of Georgia; M.A., University of Georgia; Ph.D., Marquette University.

Tom Beaudoin, PhD (Boston College), Associate Professor: teaches courses in practice-based theologies.

Kirk A. Bingaman PhD, Associate Professor of Pastoral Counseling. B.A., Messiah College; M.Div., Princeton Theological Seminary; Ph.D., Graduate Theological Union (Berkeley). Fellow, American Association of Pastoral Counselors, director of the pastoral counseling program, teaches courses in pastoral counseling and human development.

Claudio Burgaleta, S.J., PhD. (Boston College) Associate Professor, teaches courses in Hispanic ministry, church and society, and pastoral and pastoral theology.

Lisa Cataldo, PhD, (Union Theological Seminary, New York)  Assistant Professor teaches courses in pastoral care and counseling.

Harold Horell, PhD (Boston College), Assistant Professor, Director of the MA/MS program in religious education, teaches courses in youth and young adult ministry, social ministry, and religious education.

Shannon M. McAlister, Ph.D, Assistant Professor of Spirituality. B.A., Thomas Aquinas; M.A., The Catholic University of America; Ph.D., The Catholic University of America 

Francis X. McAloon, S.J., PhD, Associate Professor of Spirituality. B.A., Stetson College; M.Div., Jesuit School of Theology; S.T.M., Jesuit School of Theology; S.T.L., Jesuit School of Theology; Ph.D., Graduate Theological Union.

Doctor of Ministry Curriculum (36 credits beyond the M. Div or its equivalent)

A. Core Studies (21 credits):
      Foundations of Pastoral and Practical Theology
      Seminar in Pastoral Theology and Practice
      Theology of Pastoral Counseling and Spiritual Care
      Theology of Ministry
      Ministerial Ethics and Identity
      Pastoral Planning and Evaluation
        DMIN Mentoring Seminar
B.  Electives (15 credits):
Students are free to choose under advisement and according their interests, electives from the various courses offered in the GSRRE or other graduate schools of Fordham University.  These may be from one or more areas of study such as pastoral counseling, spirituality/spiritual direction, pastoral counseling, religious education, or from a number of areas.

A. Core Studies (21 credits):
    • Foundations of Pastoral and Practical Theology   
    • Seminar in Pastoral Theology and Practice
    Or Supervised Spiritual Direction Practicum (6 credits)
    • Theology of Pastoral Counseling and Spiritual Care
    Or Theology and Practice of Spiritual Direction
    •     Theology of Ministry
    Or the Study of Christian Spirituality
    •     Pastoral Planning and Evaluation
B. Electives (15 credits)
Students are free to choose under advisement electives from the various courses offered in the GSRRE or other graduate schools of Fordham University related to spirituality/spiritual direction, according to interests and prospective ministry.
REGR 8064 Pastoral Counseling &Spiritual Direction Skills
REGR 6804 History of Spirituality I
REGR 6806 History of Spirituality II
REGR 6811 Meditation: East &West
REGR 6818 Discernment of Spirits: Selected Mystics
REGR 8090 Advanced Seminar in Spiritual Direction
REGR 6694 Personal Identity
REGR 6692 Psychology & Religion /Spirituality
REGR 6649 Human Growth &Development
REGR 6675 Advanced Adult Development: Life Span Issues
REGR 6815 Ignatian Way
REGR 6821 Spiritual Quest with Guidance from Rahner

1. LATINO STUDIES SPECIALIZATION (Coordinator, Fr. Claudio M. Burgaleta, S.J., Ph.D.)
A. Core Studies (18 credits):             
    • Foundations of Pastoral and Practical Theology (3 credits) 
    • Seminar in Pastoral Theology and Practice (3 credits)
    • Theology of Ministry (3 credits)
    • Ministerial Ethics (3 credits)
    • US Latino Christianities or an equivalent introductory course to Intro to Hispanic Ministry (3 credits)
    • US Latino Theology (3 credits) 
2. Electives (18 credits):
In addition to courses offered by the GSRRE, students, with the approval of their advisors, may take graduate courses offered by Fordham University's Latin American and Latino Studies Institute (LALSI).  Consult their website for graduate offerings at

3. Dissertation or Project:
On some topic related to Latino/Hispanic Ministry

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