Master of Arts in Ministry and Leadership

Graduates of the Masters of Arts in Ministry and Leadership program at St. Thomas University will be qualified and credentialed in the expert theory and practice of innovative ministerial arts in the Christian tradition. Students will renew their own religious, theological, and spiritual formation by mastering how to integrate practical theological methodologies to develop parish/congregation and/or religious non-profit businesses with sociocultural and ecclesial analysis skills, listening techniques, biblical wisdom, systematic theological insight, and strategic organization techniques that empower pastors and lay ecclesial ministers in local and global 21st century contexts.

However, what also differentiates us and makes our program unique is our invitation to welcome students to do either an on-campus or an online Residency Retreat twice during their program of study. MA Student Residency Retreats create a community experience of theological and pastoral reflection, prayer and worship. Students can OPT for an in-person or online Retreat as St. Thomas University will be inclusive of various types of student needs and expectations. Residencies, whether attended in person or online will be crucial in developing students’ ministerial networks as well as enriching opportunities to engage other Christian leaders to discuss how Church leaders can address current ministry challenges, both local and global, in the 21st century.


Program Highlights

  • Most important benefit 1: 100% online coursework
  • The program provides you with a competitive advantage in the marketplace as graduates of the program will be equipped with necessary Theological Foundations for ministry, including expert knowledge of Biblical, ethical, and Pastoral Skills, including the innovative method of practical theology, all of which are integral to ministers in a 21st century context empower students to analyze and apply relevant ministerial skills within a pastoral context.
  • Course 1: Methods in Ministry – Designed to acquaint the student with the basic research methods used in pastoral action and reflection. Naming the problem, gathering data, analysis and discernment and evaluation will be studied as components that lead to pastoral practice. Each student chooses an area of research from which to develop a pastoral project of action and reflection.


Career Landscape

People who complete a Masters degree in theology immediately see their earning potential rise. The difference between a Catholic educator with a BA compared to an MA can range from $10,000-20,000. If one examines job search engines such as and and one will quickly see there are scores and scores of open and unfilled jobs for candidates with credentials such as a Masters degree in Ministry and Leadership that would allow them to be employed as Hospital Chaplain, High School Theology Teacher, College Campus minister, Catechesis Director, Young Adult Ministry Director, Pastoral Associate, Mission Director.



The program consists of 30 credits that include a 3 credit Pastoral Integration Capstone.

The Capstone requirement consists of a Field Education Experience and a Ministerial Project through which the students demonstrate their competence integrating theology and leadership for ministry in today’s Church.

Some of the courses offered include:

  • Pastoral Foundations
  • Hebrew Scriptures
  • Christian Scriptures
  • Christology
  • Sacramental Life
  • Theological Ethics
  • Method in Ministry
  • Ministerial Ethics**
  • Justice Advocacy and Social Transformation**

**Courses taken in partnership with the STU Institute for Ethical Leadership


Admission Requirements

  1. Online Graduate Application
  2. A Bachelor’s degree with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.
  3. Current CV
  4. An admissions interview with the Program Director or the STU Dean of Theology.


Transfer Credit

A maximum of 6 Theology graduate credits earned within the last 5 years with a grade of 3.0 or higher may be transferred, if earned from an accredited institution and at the discretion of the Dean.


For More Information

Dr. Bob Pennington
Director of Theology Programs
(O) 305.628.6515

Rev. Rafael Capó
School of Theology and Ministry
(O) 305.628.6525