Help for an aspiring pastoral associate or DRE?

Recently my wife and I decided to makes some changes, which is requiring some considerable faith on our part. I’ve been teaching in a university for 15 years. I have several advanced degrees (both in philosophy). I’m persuaded my experience thus far has groomed me for a vocation within the parish and/or diocese.

I have a general understanding of the requirements and administrative experience necessary for both the PA and DRE. My question concerns the best sort of supplemental education I’ll need for eventual certification in these roles. I’m curious whether my advanced degrees will be acceptable (one of which is from a Catholic university), or whether I’ll need additional core courses in theology, some sort of pastoral certificate, or something along those lines. Different parishes/diocese all seem to want slightly different things (which surprised me; I thought requirements and expectations would be uniform across dioceses).

I’ll be meeting with my priest and a pastoral associate friend this week. But for those of you with some experience in these matters, I’d love to here from you.

You may find this of interest:

It’s the National Certification Standards for Lay Ecclesial Ministers serving as:
Director of Worship
Parish Life Coordinator
Pastoral Associate
Director of Music Ministries
Parish Catechetical Leader
Youth Ministry Leader
Diocesan Youth Ministry Leader

There’s additional information at the main web site of the Alliance for the Certification of Lay Ecclesial Ministers:

It depends greatly on the pastor.

One might want an advanced degree, another might not. It’s not black and white.

Good luck!

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