Masters in Theology - Catholic Theology - Where?


I’ve begun thinking about going back to school. Work is currently interfering with my desire to learn, read, and listen about the Catholic faith.

I’ve gotten to the point where I’ve considered going back. Many masters in divinity programs tend to pop up when I search using google - but they seem to be protestant based.

Anyone know of any good universities?
(I’d love to have a passionate professor of the caliber like Scott Hahn, but any school is an potential option at this point).

Lastly - I’m a chicagoland person. Anything in that area would be preferred, but I’m open to moving for school.


for more info on this - The reason for the Masters - is so that I may eventually teach. I would prefer to teach at the college level. I would love to teach business & theology, while allowing my summers to used to tend the business I’m working with right now.



The University of Dallas is supposed to be quite orthodox (not to mention expensive!).

Ave Maria University is orthodox, I’ve heard, as is Franciscan (where Dr. Hahn teaches).


Another good choice might be Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, Mass.


Well, here are a couple schools in Minnesota, not far from Chicagoland.

St. John’s University in Collegeville, MN.

University of St Thomas, St Paul MN

This one may be even closer to you:

Marquette University, Milwaukee WI


Chicago Theological Union might have what you are looking for.


Though CTU may be a fine institution, personally, my own “conservative, traditional” Catholic outlook might be concerned with this statement from the “Our Story” portion of their website:

“The faculty are distinguished Catholic, Jewish, and Protestant scholars who write many of the leading books on theology and ministry, and are committed to mentoring their students.”

I can see the advantage of some study of the Old Testament with a Jewish expert, but though I understand that all are probably fine professors and don’t know who teaches what, I would be concerned about non-Catholics instructing me in theology and ministry according to the magisterium of the Church. Obviously, for me at least, these concerns pertain to any institute of theology.


I HIGHLY recommend Franciscan University. They offer a wonderfully convenient Distance Learning program. I just enrolled and am about to finish my first class. What’s great is you work at your own pace. You get actual recordings of classes as CD or MP3.

Go through classes as fast or slow as you like! (within 6 months anyway). And it was the least expensive distance learning MA in Theology program I found. Plus you get a degree from such a reputable university connected with many famous apologists and theologians like Jerry Usher, Scott Hahn, and Jason Evert.


So if you are looking to teach at the college level you’re looking for a PhD then? Most colleges (unless community or a very small college)will not allow someone with just a Masters to teach Theology.

I think its a great profession, but be prepared that there aren’t many jobs in that area.


Being originally from the Milwaukee area, I would have to say that Marquette has had some orthodoxy issues in the past. I don’t know if it still does, but you might want to check before committing.


I will be continuing my MDiv at CTU this coming semester, transferring from WTU in Washington, DC, and I have no problems with professors of other ideas and faiths teaching in a Catholic university. It is my understanding in academia that professors not only teach, but challenge us to learn, and I look forward to that challenge and opportunity to learn. If what they have to teach helps me do God’s will in my life, then I say lets have at it.
I too am more traditional in my thoughts, but that has never stopped me from learning. I try and not forget that Jesus went to other cultures, and it is that from them we can also learn.
Be strong and be not afraid, there are many rooms in our Father’s house. If one comes in with a closed mind, then how can one learn?
I hope to see you there jmoburg!


Br. Tom Davis, OSA


Look into Mount Saint Mary’s University in Emmitsburg, MD.



Congratulations on thinking about going back to school. I’m starting a master’s program this Fall myself at Catholic Unversity of America in DC. It took me a long time to look at programs and I did a lot of research and I would be happy to talk to you about it if you wanted to PM me.

Also, I’m from MA and I can tell you that Weston Jesuit is very heterodox. Friendly, but very heterodox. Also, I’m taking a couple of classes at Boston College and I’d say the same for them.

Hope that helps and good luck!



How about Catholic Distance University? I have seen their advertisements on EWTN and in some Catholic Newspapers. If anyone has taken classes through them, how was it?


The Rice School in the Diocese of Venice (Fla.) has a very affordable master’s program through Barry University in Miami.

I think Barry University in Miami also has a distance-learning course.


I am seriously considering this program as well. I would love to hear more about the quality of the classes and what made you choose this program. Thanks in advance!


I graduated from Ave Maria’s grad program. It’s an extremely challenging and thoroughly orthodox program. Fr. Matthew Lamb (one of the foremost Lonergan scholars) is the chair of the department. We also have Dr. Michael Waldstein (of Theology of the Body fame) with us now. The Ave program is best for people who want an academic formation. It would not be ideal for a pastoral formation.

Feel free to PM me if you have questions!

Oh - many of our PhD students, and a few professors, are Stubenvillers. It’s a good match. We also have a majority of Thomas Aquinas folks, but that’s undergrad…


Yes, they have a “moral” theologian on board who claims abortion is part of the Catholic tradition. The archbishop has openly censured him.

Marquette, from what I understand, has a very Kantian approach to ethics. I wouldn’t go there unless you were ready for a battle.


Franciscan University of Steubenville OH, about half hour east of Pittsburgh, where Hahn teaches. they also offer distance learning for MT.


I currently attend an excellent school in northern Virginia (DC suburbs) - Christendom college graduate school (a satellite campus from the main campus in Front Royal). The grad campus is very small though.

One thing you may want to check is that the school you attend is a Pontifical University. These are schools that fall under the authority of the Holy See and are therefore more likely to have orthodox faculty and faithfulness to the magisterium in classroom teachings.

Just because a school is Catholic doesn’t mean it has oversight from the Vatican, but pontifical universities do.

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