The Doctor of Ministry is a professional doctorate offering students advanced theological and pastoral formation for competent and effective pastoral ministry.

The D.Min. degree program runs once a year for fifteen weeks, between April 1 and July 15, for three consecutive years. It uses a blended learning model, 13 weeks online and two weeks in residence on campus. The residency usually takes place around the first two weeks of June and is a mandatory element of the program. Students normally take three courses each year during each 15-week cycle.

Discussion between the inquirer and the director of the concentration area of interest is highly recommended before submitting an application to discuss the inquirer’s goals and objectives for being in a doctoral program and interests regarding the concentration area. 

Deadline for applications is December 1 for courses that begin the following April. It is highly recommended that the application process begin no later than September of the year preceding the first year of anticipated studies.   


In addition to the general prerequisites for the D.Min. degree, applicants are to submit:

  • Possession of a Master of Divinity degree or its educational equivalent (i.e., approximately 72 graduate level credits in theology and its related fields) with a minimum cumulative G.P.A. of 3.0.
  • A minimum of three years of full-time service in pastoral ministry or its equivalent (e.g., 6 years of half-time ministry, etc.).
  • Completion of a 1,000 to 2,000 word statement of purpose briefly presenting a history of the applicant’s academic, pastoral, and vocational background; his/her purpose for undertaking doctoral studies in pastoral ministry; and his/her ministerial goals as they relate to liturgical catechesis.
  • Three letters of recommendation, one of which testifies to the applicant’s personal aptitude for, as well as interest in and motivation for, the field of liturgical catechesis. The other two letters must specifically attest to the applicant’s ability to complete doctoral studies.


The coursework for the degree requires at least seven (7) hours a week per course. A student taking three courses in a D.Min. semester (April-July) should set aside a minimum of 21 hours a week for study. The time is spent reading the course material, listening to a pre-taped lecture, engaging with the instructor and students in the Discussion Board or a Blog, and preparing posts for the Journal or Assignment links.

Ten courses are taken over a three year period (30 credit hours):

  • Seven courses (21 credit hours) are core courses; three courses (9 credit hours) are concentration courses.
  • One of the seven core courses is the D.Min. Seminar, that is taken after completing 18 credit hours of coursework. The course is completely online. The purpose of the seminar is to complete a draft of the D.Min proposal and develop skills for doing research.
  • Three courses are taken each year during the Spring/Summer D.Min. semester and include a two-week residency at the end of May or beginning of June.

In addition to the general guidelines and core courses for the D.Min. program, the following information is specific to the Liturgical Catechesis concentration:

  • Due to the nature of the degree program, graduate courses from another institution usually are not applicable to the D.Min. degree. Students in the Liturgical Catechesis concentration are expected to follow the 30 credit hour course plan of three consecutive years.
  • Concentration Courses:
    Foundations in Liturgical and Catechetical Documents
    Liturgical Catechesis and the Liturgical Year
    Liturgical Catechesis in a Digital Age


  • A student may apply for candidacy after completing 21 credit hours of coursework.
  • Application for candidacy is to be submitted to the Catechetics Academic Area Director with the following documents attached:
    -An essay (700-1,000 words) entitled “Theology of Ministry”
    -A paper completed in one of the D.Min. courses that demonstrates the student’s ability to apply theological research to a pastoral context
    -A draft of the D.Min. Proposal
  • The Academic Area faculty considers each student’s application and renders a decision.
  • Candidacy must be attained before a project proposal may be submitted to the D.Min. Proposal Committee for approval.
  • The D.Min. Handbook has further details on applying for candidacy.

D.Min. Project

Project and Treatise (See the D.Min. Handbook for details and procedures related to the project and treatise).

  • The D.Min. project is to be an original contribution to pastoral ministry with a focus on Liturgical Catechesis.
  • Under the supervision of a Project Director, the project proposal is to be finalized, approved, and then implemented and evaluated.
  • The Treatise is to include a chapter on the theological and pastoral foundations of the project.  Additional chapters report the project design, implementation, and evaluation. The appendix must contain all components of the project (PowerPoint presentations, presentation outline, Handouts, announcements, etc.)

Presentation (See the D.Min. Handbook for details and procedures related to the presentation).

  • Student must make a formal presentation on the project using PowerPoint.
  • The Project Director, Reader, and Dean's delegate participate in a discussion about the project at the conclusion of the presentation.