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Master of Divinity Degree program


The Master of Divinity is a fully accredited professional ministerial degree. It aims to instill in its students a thorough understanding of the Catholic theological heritage and of its faithful contemporary expression, an enriched practice of the Catholic spiritual life, growth in human maturity, and the acquisition of the skills for effective pastoral ministry. It is designed to be completed by seminarians while they are fulfilling the requirements of the Ordination Program. It can also be adapted to serve as a professional preparation for those who desire to serve the Church in other areas of ministry, but who are not called to the priesthood.


The degree program aims to prepare seminarians to share in a special way in the three-fold office of Christ: teaching the Gospel, celebrating the divine mysteries, and shepherding God’s people. The degree demands:

  • a knowledge of the Catholic religious heritage

  • an understanding of the contemporary setting for evangelization

  • the human and spiritual dimensions of priestly formation

  • the pastoral qualities and skills necessary for service as priests

Degree Requirements

The master of divinity program requires a minimum of three academic years of full-time work (90 credit hours), including a one-year residency requirement. Participation in the Priestly Formation Program is mandatory. Candidates for the M.Div degree must also maintain a GPA of at least 2.0 while completing courses, including:

  • 6 credit hours–Canon Law

  • 12 credit hours–Church History

  • 6 credit hours–Liturgy and Spiritual Theology

  • 12 credit hours–Moral Theology

  • 3 credit hours–Pastoral Theology

  • 15 credit hours–Sacred Scripture

  • 15 credit hours–Systematic Theology

  • 6 credit hours–Pastoral Field Education

► See sample Three-year Course Sequence (coming soon)
► See all Seminary Course Descriptions

Admission Requirements (M.Div.)

  • Bachelor’s degree (or the equivalent) from an accredited college

  • Completion of a minimum 30 undergraduate credits in philosophy

All seminarians in theology are enrolled in the Master of Divinity degree program. All other students who meet admission requirements must declare their degree program upon application.

Distinctive Resources

Priest, lay, and religious faculty members combine scholarly credentials and pastoral experience in their courses, and there are many opportunities for formal and informal community interaction with the candidates. Seminary faculty serve as formation advisors, and spiritual directors are available from a list approved by the Seminary Spiritual Director. Degree candidates have full access to the library and information technology, learning services, writing center, EASL support, supervised pastoral field education placements, and all other aspects of campus life.

16300 Old Emmitsburg Road | Emmitsburg, MD 21727
Map & Directions | | 301-447-6122
Frederick Campus | 5350 Spectrum Drive | Frederick, MD 21703
Map & Directions | | 301-682-8315