Awarded conjointly by Regis College and the University of Toronto
The Master of Divinity program prepares students for professional ministry and leadership within the Roman Catholic Church. It provides them with the opportunity to develop academically, spiritually, personally and professionally within a richly varied learning and worshipping community.

Students study in an environment enhanced by the academic research of the faculty and students of the College’s advanced degree programs, as well as by the pastoral concerns and questions offered by those experienced in ministry. Students are immersed in the ecumenical, interfaith and multicultural context of the Toronto School of Theology and the University of Toronto, located in one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse cities in North America.

 

The program offers an approach to preparation for ministry rooted in the heart of the intellectual, spiritual and social achievements of the Catholic and Ignatian traditions, using these achievements as the framework and foundation for a truly contemporary integration of aesthetic appreciation, intellectual knowledge, critical thinking, spiritual reflection, advocacy for justice and pastoral action.

Goals

  • To promote a comprehensive understanding of theology as a discipline, and of the Roman Catholic tradition within it by focusing on the major areas of systematic theology, the exegesis of Sacred Scripture, the principles and issues of moral theology, the history of the Church, and the development of doctrine.
  • To prepare students for ministry and leadership within the Church by equipping them with the skills necessary to articulate a theory of ministry relevant to their vocations; communicate through writing, preaching, teaching or in other appropriate ways; function with an appropriate professional style; perceive people and situations accurately and empathetically; give guidance where needed and appropriate, counsel people experiencing personal crisis or make appropriate referrals to other sources of professional help; discover and use resources needed for a more effective ministry; cooperate with other religious bodies and traditions in a spirit of openness.
  • To develop an awareness of and an active commitment to ongoing renewal in the Church, as expressed in the documents of the Second Vatican Council and the documents of the Society of Jesus.
  • To encourage a community of faculty and students actively engaged in theology

Admission Requirements

Please refer to the Basic Degree and Advanced Degree admission requirements.

 

The Ignatian Core

The Ignatian Core

An innovative experience of ministry formation and the “spine” of the Master of Divinity program. Composed of three foundational courses that introduce the tools of Ignatian spirituality and pedagogy, the theological field education process, and the final comprehensive exam, the “Ignatian Core” fosters the development of pastoral agents capable of faithful creativity and wise autonomy who can reach from “the heart of the Church to the frontiers” (Benedict XVI) with the compassion and the wisdom of Christ.

This Ignatian Core facilitates the student’s personal integration and development throughout the program. It also serves as the integrating principle of the student’s biblical, historical, doctrinal, systematic, ethical, pastoral, spiritual and ecumenical studies. Students are also encouraged to engage in ecumenical, interfaith and cross-cultural dialogue.

Program Outline & Requirements

The Master of Divinity is a three-year, thirty-credit program. A year (two consecutive sessions) residency must be completed as a full time student. All students are required to maintain an electronic portfolio that documents their progress through their programs.

Program Outline Details

Biblical: 6 Units

 

  • Introduction to Old Testament
  • Two Old Testament Electives
  • Introduction to New Testament: RGB1501H
  • Two New Testament Electives

Historical: 4 Units

 

  • Introduction: Early Church History
  • Three Electives: Usually including courses in Medieval Church History, the Reformation and Vatican II.

Moral Theology: 3 Units

 

  • RGT1905H Ethical Reflections on Pastoral Practice
  • Two Electives: Students proceeding to ordination may be required to fulfil further specific requirements in this area. Moral theology courses are normally followed in the Catholic tradition.

Theological: 7 Units

 

  • RGT1101H Foundations of Theology
  • Six Electives: Electives normally cover the following basic areas of systematic theology for which the student is responsible in the M.Div Comprehensive Examination: the nature of theology; revelation and faith; God one and triune; Christology; creation and eschatology; sin and grace; ecclesiology and sacramental theology. Systematic theology courses are usually taken in the Catholic tradition.

Pastoral: 3 Units

 

  • RGP1621H Introduction to Ministry
  • Two Electives: Electives normally include a course in Canon Law for pastoral ministry. Students proceeding to ordination may be required to fulfil further specific requirements in this area.

Theological Field Education: 2 Units

 

  • Placement: RGF3010H (1 unit). 250 Hours of supervised ministry. See below for a discussion of the educational philosophy and practice adopted in the completion of these units. Registration in the placement may take place in the fall, spring or summer session: RGF 3010 HF (Fall) OR RGF 3010 HS (Spring) OR RGF 3010 HY (Summer).
  • Theological Reflection: RGF3040H (1 unit). A seminar that integrates theological field education and academic study.

Free Electives: 5 Units

 

These courses may be selected from any of the four TST departments, although they are usually selected with a view to addressing specific formation needs or a concentration of courses in one department (e.g. Theology).

M.Div. Comprehensive Exam: 0 Units

 

Pastoral Competency: For those who wish to pursue Pastoral Competency scroll down 

Theological Field Education

Theological Field Education is the heart of Regis College’s M.Div. Program.  Through ministry placements in churches and various organizations throughout the GTA, students are challenged to blend intellectual knowledge, critical thinking, spiritual reflection and practical decision making to create a balanced theology for ministry. The Master of Divinity program introduces students to biblical, historical, doctrinal, systematic, ethical, pastoral, spiritual and ecumenical studies, all integrated with a theological field education process involving ministry placements and theological reflection with an experienced supervisor. It assumes that individuals are responsible for their own learning. It acknowledges that each person brings to the learning process his or her own particular history and set of experiences.

Placement Opportunities

 

Students are invited to design their theological field education placements on a level commensurate with their previous ministerial experiences.  Please note that all placements must be approved by your Program Director. Placement opportunities include:

 

  • Non-profit ministry settings that include, but are not limited to, camping ministries, prison ministries, housing and homelessness, children’s homes, creation care/ecology placements, end-of-life care, and campus ministry settings.
  • Local church settings in Baptist, Anglican/Episcopal, Presbyterian, Mennonite, and other denominational traditions.
  • Clinical Pastoral Education.
  • Student Pastorates – Students can meet some or all of their field education requirements if they are appointed as a pastor of a local church during their M.Div. education. These appointments are arranged by the appropriate denominational official or body, but students must register with the Office of Field Education and meet all of its requirements for graduation.

Field Education Levels

Level One: Observer Ministry Placement

 

Characteristics: No experience, or limited experience in ministry.

Purpose: To familiarize the MDiv candidate with the context and dynamics of ministry.

Necessary Skills: Observing, listening, reflecting, reporting.

Requirements: 2-3 weeks observing and dialoguing with a practitioner in a chosen field of ministry.

Outcomes: A written report of the experience using the general methodology of analysis provided in “Contextual Analysis of a Theological Field Education Placement.” (Appendix F, Theological Field Education Handbook, Regis College).

Level Two: Intern Ministry Placement

 

Characteristics: Some experience in ministry.

Purpose: To enable the MDiv candidate to gain personal confidence, and to develop a pastoral sense of identity, authority and mission.

Necessary Skills: Self-directed learning; good listening skills; willingness to learn from others and to collaborate with others.

Requirements: Engagement in a supervised ministry placement.

Outcomes: To develop a process for reflecting upon one’s own ministry, using the contextual analysis and case-study method.

Level Three: Resident Ministry Placement

 

Characteristics: Extensive ministry experience.

Purpose: To provide the MDiv candidate with the opportunity to animate a project in a chosen ministry placement.

Necessary Skills: A high level of self-motivation, and organizational and collaborative skills.

Requirements: A pre-requisite for this level is a letter of reference from a previous supervisor who has worked closely with the candidate and can attest to their ministry experience. In collaboration with the Theological Field Education Director and the ministry personnel of a chosen site, the candidate will be required to develop and execute a project that will enhance the site’s services. This must be a project that can be sustained by the chosen site and not solely dependent on the skills and continued presence of the candidate alone.

Outcomes: A contextual analysis and written assessment of the placement.

PLEASE NOTE: If a candidate begins in Level 1, it is expected that they will move through Level 2. A candidate might also begin in Level 2, and do part of his/her practicum in Level 3. To learn more, please contact the Director of Theological Field Education, Maureen Baldwin, CND.

Comprehensive Examination

The Master of Divinity program concludes with a synthetic comprehensive examination process that allows the student to:

  • Develop and demonstrate a basic grasp of the dialogue between a theological method and Christian Catholic doctrine;
  • Know the tradition and development of doctrinal expression;
  • Know the biblical and historical sources of doctrine;
  • Be able to discuss the systematic interrelation and the pastoral Implications of doctrine; and
  • Be able to demonstrate the ecumenical and ethical implications of doctrine.

The examination involves written preparation and an hour-long interview with three faculty members acting as a Board. Master of Divinity Comprehensive Examination Guidelines are provided to students as they complete the first year of their program.

Graduation Requirements

  • A passing grade of B- or better in each of 30 course units, including a passing grade in the theological field education units (RGF3010H, RGF3040H).
  • One year of full-time residency (two consecutive sessions; enrolled in four courses in each session).
  • A passing grade on the comprehensive examination.
  • An overall course average of B-.
  • Participation in the formation components of the program, including: entry assessment, and annual reflection process.

Upon successful completion of the M.Div. Comprehensive Examination, the Bachelor of Sacred Theology (STB), the ecclesiastical degree equivalent to the MDiv, is also usually granted to MDiv graduands by Regis College.

 

Current MDiv students who have completed all program requirements must submit the Graduation Application to the Registrar’s Office before the due date. Convocation occurs in November of each year.

 

Graduation Application Form  

Pastoral Competency

Students seeking ordination to the priesthood are required to pass an oral examination assessing their practical and theoretical readiness to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Students seeking future employment as lay ecclesial ministers in a parish setting have the option of passing a similar examination to assess their readiness for ministry in a sacramental setting. To assist these students to acquire practical competence in preparing for and celebrating the Sacraments, RGT2810H “Pastoral Competency” focuses on case-study and role-playing and is offered during the second year of the Master of Divinity program. It is followed by an oral examination devoted to practical cases in sacramental ministry. A letter assessing pastoral competence is given to students upon successful completion of the workshop and examination.

 

Those who wish to pursue Pastoral Competency are required to take the following pre-requisite courses in the following areas:

 

  • Ethical Reflections of Pastoral Practice
  • Sexual Ethics
  • Canon Law
  • Bioethics
  • Social Justice

 

Please note that all of these courses must be taken at a Catholic college. The Pastoral Competency course and examination are also open to those preparing for lay ministry. You must seek approval from the M.Div. Director and the Registrar to participate in this course in August prior to the academic year in which it is offered, and request for permission to enroll via the Registrar’s Office.