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M.A. in Pastoral Care

36 Credits | Hybrid On Campus

This program is offered online with a one-week intensive on campus.

pastoral care, two people holding hands

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The Master of Arts in Pastoral Care is designed to prepare students engaged in ministerial work to be competent and effective pastoral caregivers in their present and future ministries. The program nurtures in-depth study, meaningful reflection, and the interdependence of theory and practice.

Although students in the program may progress through the curriculum completing courses online, they are required to complete the course Pastoral Counseling Skills on campus. This course is offered as a one week (Monday to Friday) class during the early summer session, usually mid-June, or at times as a 15-week fall or spring course. All other courses can be completed entirely online.

At the core of the MA program in Pastoral Care...

are philosophical, theological, historical, psychological, sociological, and cultural foundations. Various modalities of theological reflection are utilized: pastoral and practical theology, psychology, developmental theory, spirituality, and cultural and multicultural perspectives.

Who are the students who enroll in the hybrid Masters Degree Program in Pastoral Care?

They are clergy and laypeople involved in ministry of many kinds: parish ministry, chaplaincy in hospitals or other settings, youth ministry, work with the elderly or with at-risk populations. Those interested in Chaplaincy may use this degree to seek certification from the National Association of Catholic Chaplains (NACC) or the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC).


Each of the following listed courses account for 3 credits

24 Credits (8 courses) from:

  • PCGR 6386 Pastoral Counseling Theory
  • PCGR 6310 Human Growth and Development
  • PCGR 6384 Professional Ethics in Pastoral Counseling
  • PCGR 6380 Theology of Pastoral Counseling and Spiritual Care
  • PCGR 6440 Pastoral Counseling Skills*
  • PCGR 6382 Social and Cultural Foundations of Pastoral Counseling
  • Choose Two of Three: PCGR 6410 Psychology and Religion/Spirituality, PCGR 6420 Marriage and Family Therapy, or PCGR 7420 Death, Dying and Bereavement

* Students of the Online MA in Pastoral Care program cannot complete the degree without the completion of the on-campus (offered as a summer intensive or 15-week semester-long course) Pastoral Counseling Skills course.

12 Credits (4 courses) from:

  • Religious Education Requirement: REGR 7140 Curriculum and Religious Education OR REGR 6840 Youth and Young Adult Ministry and Education OR REGR 6120 Education Peace/Justice
  • Scripture Requirement: RLGR 6010 Old Testament or REGR 6014 OR RLGR 6011 New Testament
  • Theology Requirement: RLGR 6030 Christology or REGR 6256 OR PMGR 6510 Theology of Ministry OR RLGR 6031 Theology of the Human Person or REGR 6351
  • Spirituality Requirement: SPGR 7830 Discernment in Christian Tradition OR SPGR 6752 Christian Contemplation and Action