Top

Course Catalog

Click Here for the Academic Schedule    Click Here for the Initial Formation Model


COURSES OFFERED THROUGH THE JOSEPHINUM DIACONATE INSTITUTE

The following courses are offered as part of our online Diaconate Distance Learning program. 
Click on the course name for the course description. 

BIBLICAL STUDIES

BI50DE

Introduction to Scripture

BI510DE

The Pentateuch

BI601DE

The Prophets

BI611DE

Synoptic Gospels/Acts

BI712DE

Letters of Paul

BI801DE

Gospel of John

BI601DE

The Book of Revelation

BI901DE

Psalms


CANON LAW

CL612DE

Canon Law


DOGMA

DO60DE

Vatican II Overview - 6 week course

DO511DE

Fundamental Theology

DO601DE

Christology

DO701DE

Ecclesiology

DO725DE

Sacramental Theology

DO810DE

Introduction to Diaconal Ministry - Theology of the Diaconate

DO841DE

Philosophy for Understanding Theology

DO965DE

Deacon Seminar for Certificate Candidates


HISPANIC MINISTRY

HM951DE

Hispanic Ministry


HISTORY

HS501DE

Church History

HS602DE

Patristics


LITURGY

LI501DE

Sacred Music 

LI962DE

Theology of Liturgy


MORAL THEOLOGY

MO60DE

Introduction to Catholic Social Teaching - 6 week course

MO602DE

Catholic Social Teaching

MO841DE

Medical and Health Care Morality

MO844DE

Moral Theology


PASTORAL THEOLOGY

PA60DE

Catechism Overview - 6 week course

PA502DE

Introduction to Homiletics

PA541DE

Homiletics I (Celebrations of the Liturgical Year)

PA641DE

Homiletics II (Homilies for Special Occasions)

PA651DE

Better Homilies

PA631DE

Principles of Catechesis

PA868DE

Pastoral Counseling

PA883DE

Marriage and Family

PA901DE

Addictions

PA902DE

Planning and Conducting Funeral and Memorial Services

PA903DE

Pastoral Theology

PA910DE

Implementing the Rites of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA)

PA931DE

Health Care Ministry

PA951DE

Best Practices in Parish Administration

PA990DE

Introduction to Grief Counseling


SPIRITUALITY

SP611DE

Spirituality

 

 


Course Descriptions

BIBLICAL STUDIES

BI50DE Introduction to Scripture - 1 Credit Hour - Six week course

What is the Bible? How do you interpret it? These two questions are practically addressed throughout the course. Since the Bible is “the Word of God in human words,” the joint divine and human authorship of Sacred Scripture from an Incarnational perspective is considered and inspiration, canonicity and truth/inerrancy by means of the guiding Magisterial documents are studied. The specific methods and tools for studying the Biblical text are introduced.  More...

 

BI510DE The Pentateuch

Beginning with an overview of the methodology used for the study of the Old Testament, the course introduces students to the content and structure of the five books of the Torah and their relationship to the other books of Scripture, both the Old and New Testaments. The approach taken to the material is the Documentary Hypothesis, as described and approved in Dei Verbum. Students are be prepared to incorporate the Pentateuch into reflection, study and preaching. More...

 

BI601DE The Prophets

The prophets tell the story of God’s Chosen People.  As voices of God, they also held the actions of leaders and people up to scrutiny in light of God’s law, and issued warnings about the consequences of disobedience.  The Major Prophets are emphasized, the course also will cover several of the Minor Prophets and the ”Former” Prophets.  Familiarity with the writings of the prophets in their historical context leads to a better understanding of the relationship between Old Testament prophets and New Testament texts and events. More...

 

BI611DE Synoptic Gospels/Acts

Students study the three synoptic Gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke, including the relationships among the three Gospels. The Acts of the Apostles, as a continuation of Luke’s narrative is included. Attention is given to questions of authorship and theological purpose, audience, dates and significant themes in each Gospel and in Acts. Various interpretive methods, some classical and others more modern, are employed. More...

 

BI712DE Letters of Paul

Students explore selected letters of Paul. Topics include authorship, audience, secular and religious contexts. The study of Paul’s writing style brings additional meaning to the texts. Students are prepared for teaching and preaching in parish and similar settings. More...

 

BI801DE Gospel of John

Substantially different from the synoptic Gospels, John’s Gospel presents Jesus in a number of settings. Of significance is the Book of Glory and the Book of Signs. Special attention to the Bread of Life discourse. Students are prepared to preach from John’s Gospel, especially during Lent and Easter, and describe the history, audience and context of the Gospel. More...

 

 BI601DE The Book of Revelation

Students develop an appreciation and understanding of the Book of Revelation by careful study of the text as Sacred Scripture. Homiletic considerations are a particular focus. The study of Revelation examines the pastoral challenges stemming from popular fundamentalist interpretations. Students also explore the impact of Revelation on worship, justice and witness. More...


BI930DE Psalms

The text from this biblical book is explored as the liturgical and personal prayer book of Jews and Christians for millennia, a book which embraces the entire spectrum of human emotion and experience, speaking as much to people of today as it did to those who rst composed it. The overall structure of the book, types of Psalms, aspects of Hebrew poetry, and important themes arising in the text are analyzed. Recommended Prerequisite: BI 501 Introduction to Scripture.


CANON LAW

CL612DE Canon Law

Canon law, the internal legal system of the Church, is the oldest continuously functioning legal system in the western world and affects virtually every aspect of Catholic life. The course introduces students to canon law, including its history and principles of interpretation. The course addresses questions that are most likely to be faced by deacons in ministry, including the rights and responsibilities of clerics, governance in the church, and laws governing the sacraments of which the deacon is minister. Canonical issues in preparation for marriage are covered in detail. More...

 

DOGMA

DO60DE Vatican II Overview - 1 Credit Hour - 6 week course

The major documents of Vatican II are examined in the context of Council debate and discussion. The course considers the theological environment prior to the Council and how Council documents were affected by conversations among theologians and others. Also part of the course is consideration of the steps taken over the nearly fifty years since adjournment of the Council to implement its decrees.

 

DO511DE Fundamental Theology

The course examines the ways in which humanity knows that God exists and how God is revealed in the world and in Scripture.  The study of creation, life and the purpose of human life offers important insights into the mind and the plan of God, including the fall and redemption of humanity.  God sent the Son to redeem humanity.  How does this act of love on the part of the Father and then of the Son in embracing the cross reveal more about God?  Early in its history, the Church addressed fundamental theological questions, and through centuries of debate and decision developed basic Magisterium teachings that are reflected in today’s ecclesiology and liturgy.  More...

 

DO601DE Christology

The Son of God became human while remaining divine. He suffered death on the cross to redeem humanity, and rose from the dead in glory. The early Church divided over the question of who was and who is Jesus. The early Councils proclaimed doctrine held to this day, and the Church Fathers wrote cogently about Him. The course addresses the fundamental questions about Jesus and review the heresies about Jesus that threatened and continue to threaten the Church. The significance of the person of Jesus Christ in the modern world and His redeeming actions place Him at the core of faith.  More...

 

DO701DE Ecclesiology

Beginning with images and history of the Church, the course will examine the nature of the church and its emerging challenges. This course will consider both classic insights and new directions in ecclesiology, including reflections on the nature and exercise of ministry in the church. A review of models of the church from the writings of theologians and pastors of all eras will form the basis for a critical examination of two documents of the Second Vatican Council: The Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium) and The Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (Gaudium et Spes). More...

 

DO725DE Sacramental Theology

A comprehensive study of the theology and rites for administering the Sacraments.  The course examines biblical foundations for each sacrament, the way that the Church has understood and practiced its life of prayer and sanctification throughout history using the sacraments. It focuses on the way that the Church currently celebrates the Sacraments. Preparation for diaconal ministry is achieved through an understanding of the developmental history of each sacrament and a study of the liturgical texts. More...

 

DO810DE Introduction to Diaconal Ministry - Theology of the Diaconate

Study of the key documents related to the diaconate, including Gaudium et Spes, writings of the popes and publications of the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops. Secondary literature published by theologians, deacons and laypeople will present the diaconate in its current ministerial context and suggest directions for the future. Publications of the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) will be used to present empirical data about deacons and the diaconate. More...

 

DO841DE Philosophy for Understanding Theology

The relationship between philosophy and Christian theology for the purpose of possessing a better understanding of theology. What influence have key philosophers exerted through the centuries in shaping Christian theology in both its understandings and forms of expression? Included are the ancient philosophers and a selection of philosophies from early Christian times to post modernism. The Directory emphasizes the importance of philosophy in understanding the major doctrines of the Church, and recognizes that knowledge of philosophy aids in understanding theology.  More...


DO965DE Deacon Seminar for Certificate Candidates

In the final semester of the Josephinum Diaconate Institute certificate program this two credit seminar is required to complete the requirements for the certificate.  In this seminar a topic will be selected and a 25 page capstone paper will be written. The range of possible topics may fall into the following areas: (1) History of the Diaconate (2) Diaconate in your diocese (3) Theology of the Diaconate (4) Diaconate in Contemporary Church

 

HISPANIC MINISTRY

HM951DE Hispanic Ministry

Immigration from Latin America has reached massive proportions in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. The overwhelming majority of immigrants are Catholic in tradition and seek to live and practice their faith in their new home. This course will prepare both Anglo and Latino students to minister to this large and growing population by familiarizing them with Latino culture, language and faith traditions. Of particular importance is ministry to adolescents and young adults since Latinos constitute a majority of young Catholics in the United States.

 

HISTORY

HS501DE Church History

A review of the theological and historical development of the Church. Particular attention is paid to the history of the Church in the United States. Study of the important issues, controversies and persons in the history of the Church and their impact on the present view of the Church’s mission and vision. More...

 

HS602DE Patristics

The early Church Fathers addressed fundamental questions about the Church in their writings. Included are texts on Christology, the Trinity, the sacraments and other topics. Writings from the Eastern and Western Fathers will be read so as to understand better how the Church currently “breathes with both lungs.”  More...

 

LITURGY

LI501DE Sacred Music

This course examines the historical development of liturgical music with an eye toward its pastoral applications, from early Christian communities to the Church of today. Selections that illustrate the various stages within this evolution will be available. Students will learn to analyze and comment on compositions from musical, liturgical, and pastoral perspectives. How has the Church responded to developments in liturgical music, and what is the impact on liturgical music ministry in parish settings today. Students of all disciplinary backgrounds will be able to engage the material; there are no prerequisites for previous musical, historical, or theological training.

 

LI962DE Theology of Liturgy

The course studies the liturgy and its function in the life and mission of the Church. The anthropological, historical and theological foundations of the liturgy are examined through the study of ecclesial and magisterial documents.  More...

 

MORAL THEOLOGY

MO60DE Introduction to Catholic Social Teaching - 1 Credit Hour - 6 week course

A six week course focused on the Seven Principles of Catholic Social Thought. Application of the Principles to current sociological, economic and political challenges. This course is a prerequisite for more advanced study of Catholic Social Teaching. More...

 

MO602DE Catholic Social Teaching

Building on the Seven Principles of Social Justice as defined by the USCCB, the student examines an expanded view of Catholic social thought. These principles are used by popes and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to engage morality in the making of political and economic decisions. Explores a detailed review of current issues in the political arena that challenge justice as recognized by the Church. Prerequisite: MO 60 or the equivalent familiarity with basic Catholic Social Teaching. More...

 

MO841DE Medical and Health Care Morality

An orientation to the theology of the human body, personhood, and human dignity in protecting life from beginning to end and in treating illness. Subjects to be considered include killing and life taking, as well as the principles of double effect, totality, material/formal cooperation, and common good as applied to medical issues. Other topics discussed include ordinary/extraordinary means, especially in death and dying and surgical interventions, questions about sterilization, contraception, and in-vitro fertilization, abortion, pregnancy and delivery.  More...

 

MO844DE Moral Theology

A study of the interaction of the theological traditions of East and West, both today and throughout history, with emphasis on a particular theme or set of questions in Christian ethics. Students will consider five basic themes in the study of ethics from Eastern and Western thought: (1) the relationship between moral theology and Christian ethics; (2) God as source of the moral life; (3) the nature of the human person; (4) the problem of evil and the experience of sin; (5) conscience and moral decision-making.  More...

 

PASTORAL THEOLOGY

PA60DE Catechism Overview - 1 Credit Hour - 6 week course

A six week introductory course on the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Students will read most of the Catechism and understand the basic principles of the Catholic faith. The course is intended as a review of Church teachings suitable for deacon aspirants or lay ministry applicants.

 

PA502DE Introduction to Homiletics

Liturgical preaching in the Roman Catholic tradition is introduced. Students are prepared to preach through the three components of an effective homily: 1) Theological Message; 2) Spiritual and Intellectual Preparation; and 3) Style of Presentation. The Church’s documents on preaching the homily including: Fulfilled in Your Hearing and Preaching the Mystery of Faith are incorporated to ensure that the student has all of the objective components necessary for effective preaching.  This course is taken Pass/Fail. More...

 

PA541DE  Homiletics I (Celebrations of the Liturgical Year)

The preparation and preaching of homilies that pertain to celebrations of the liturgical calendar, i.e., Sundays of the year and Feasts are covered. Digital recordings assist students in the evaluation of their own homiletic skills. This course is taken Pass/Fail.

 

PA641DE  Homiletics II (Homilies for Special Occasions)

The preparation and preaching of homilies for special occasions: such as, weddings, funerals, baptisms, and anniversaries are covered. Digital recordings will be used to evaluate the student’s homiletic skills. This course is taken Pass/Fail.

 

PA651DE Better Homilies

Students will concentrate of improving their homilies. After a review of homiletic fundamentals, the course will include substantial opportunities for students to share homilies with the class and benefit from facilitator and peer critique. This course is taken Pass/Fail.  More... 

 

PA631DE Principles of Catechesis

Designed for deacons, lay ministers and volunteers who will be involved in planning and implementing faith formation for all ages and anyone interested in learning more about emerging models of catechesis. The course will provide a survey of emerging models and approaches to faith formation. The reading assignments and presentations will point to texts, journals, web sites and parishes that provide and practice the models described. The course will encourage conversation and mutual learning about all approaches to parish faith formation across the life span with the goal of assisting all who bear this responsibility.More...

 

PA868DE Pastoral Counseling

A review of basic counseling theory, processes and skill development, focused on assessment, listening, and goal setting. This course describes various emotional/mental disorders and addresses the question of making appropriate non-professional assessments and professional referrals. The course is intended for ministers in a pastoral setting who have no formal training in counseling. Special emphasis will be placed upon helping the minister recognize common issues and problems and determine an appropriate response.  Students will learn their own strengths and weaknesses in a counseling setting,  This is a course in pastoral care, not professional counseling.  More...

 

PA883DE Marriage and Family

A course to assist in the pastoral care of couples considering marriage, married couples and families.  Marriage preparation, including specific programs such as Pre-Cana, FOCUS and related opportunities are covered in detail.  Included are pastoral approaches to counseling families with marriage difficulties, divorce and annulment, and the development of a sound spirituality in marriage.  The course is designed to support ministers in pastoral situations and is not intended as preparation for professional counseling.  More...

 

PA901DE Addictions

Students will learn about the latest developments in the study of addictions – alcohol, drugs, pornography and other habits that are difficult to break. The principal focus is on addiction to alcohol and drugs. Explanation of the Twelve Step programs. Students also are prepared for the more likely role of ministry to the family and friends of addicts. This is a course in pastoral ministry, not a course in professional counseling.

 

PA902DE Planning and Conducting Funeral and Memorial Services

Funerals and Memorial Services from the beginning stages of death right up through the final burial and committal service.  Study and review of the current Roman Catholic guidelines covering vigils and calling hours, funeral masses, memorial services, committal services, grave side services, and cremations. Addresses difficult funerals including services for infants, suicides, tragic deaths, and multiple deaths. More...

 

PA903DE Pastoral Theology

The study of pastoral theology addresses the relationship between doctrine and practice, especially practice in a parish. The course reviews several schools of thought on pastoral theology and considers current controversies. The documents of Vatican II and later writings form the foundation of the course.

 

PA910DE Implementing the Rites of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA)

This course provides tools and practical guidance for those preparing to lead the RCIA process.  The course will review the extensive literature accumulated over years of experience with the RCIA process in a variety of pastoral settings.  Of particular importance is the organization of an RCIA program, the identification and training of volunteers, the structure of classes and other activities and the relationship between catechumenate and the Church. This course is most effective when the entire R CIA team participates together. More...

 

PA931DE Health Care Ministry

An introduction to the responsibilities of the chaplain in a hospital or other medical facility in the context of the six major roles filled by the chaplain. Practical modules include: visiting the sick, death bereavement and end of life issues, cultural challenges. crisis ministry and the obligations of a professional in a chaplain position.  Participants are required to visit a hospital, work with a chaplain, and complete assigned tasks relating to clinical visits in addition to readings, reflection papers and examination.  This course is designed to assist deacons who are asked to minister as a chaplain; it is not preparation for a profession or career as a health care facility chaplain. More...

 

PA951DE Best Practices in Parish Administration

This course presents a practical approach to studying the day-to-day issues that arise for the administrator to address.  Parishes, in practice, can really be considered to be business entities, both large and small, that procure goods and services and have varying numbers of employees to help meet the demands of the “business.”  It is important to know something about contracting, managing parish facilities, and human resources management, among other things, in order to manage and advise the pastor about establishing and implementing sound practices for hiring, managing and disciplining employee, for example.  It is also important to be familiar with laws and regulations that are applicable to human resources management.  While state and local laws may not be consistent in many of the areas, participants should become aware of those that are locally applicable. The ability to recognize potential legal issues in order to seek timely professional assistance is of particular importance to an administrator. This course addresses both the practical business applications and provides some familiarity with applicable general legal principles. More...

 

PA990DE Introduction to Grief Counseling

This course guides the students though an exploration of the many facets of a person who is grieving. Completion of this course will allow the participant to identify with those who suffer a loss and allow the student to experience a methodology of counseling to apply in their ministry.

The student will explore the attitude that we have toward loss and death; define what grief and bereavement mean; identify factors that influence different reactions to grief; examine different grieving scenarios; consider cultural differences among various religions; explore the healing process through counseling; learn how to develop a good grief group; and list professional organizations and helpful resources for grieving and those who help them.

In addition, each student will be assigned the role of acting as a student to another student who will play the role of a grieving person, thereby allowing the students to gain practical insight into the theoretical basis of the course. Students will be required to give a weekly report on the progress of their assigned client and provide feedback on their assigned counselor.

Completion of the course does not certify the student to act as a licensed or certified grief counselor but serves as an introductory level course that will help the student understand the grieving process and successfully conduct individual or group grief counseling sessions.  More...

 

SPIRITUALITY

SP611DE Spirituality

The sources, principles and practices of sound spirituality with the fundamental truths of Catholic faith as applied to deacons and the development of sound spirituality.  The need for and values to be gained from integration of spiritual reading, personal prayer, private devotion and liturgical worship contribute to sound pastoral practice in diaconal ministry.  In addition to a review of theories or approaches to spirituality, the course will include practical aspects of spirituality in diaconal ministry.  More...