TheologyDownload the program description (PDF)
By virtue of the federation of Saint Paul University with the University of Ottawa, the Faculty of Theology of Saint Paul University offers graduate programs leading to the degrees conferred jointly by the senates of both universities.
Other graduate theology programs within the sole jurisdiction of the Senate of Saint Paul University are also offered; their description and requirements can be found in the calendar of the Faculty of Theology.
The Faculty of Theology offers the following programs whose degrees are conferred jointly by the senates of the University of Ottawa and Saint Paul University:
- Master of Arts in Theology;
- PhD in Theology;
- Master of Pastoral Theology;
- Doctor of Ministry;
- Master in Religious Education.
The doctoral program is intended to promote the acquisition of a high level of intellectual autonomy and expertise in a field of theology. As well, applicants are expected to contribute to the progress of knowledge in their discipline or field of studies by presenting original research in the form of a doctoral dissertation. Moreover, the program aims to form qualified persons for university research and teaching or for other activities that require advanced specialization in our disciplines and fields of study.
Students register in one of the following concentrations:
- Systematic and historical theology
- Biblical studies
- Eastern Christian studies
Doctoral candidates can best benefit from the resources of the faculty by defining their thesis projects in view of the areas of competence of faculty members.
BLÉE Fabrice, Associate Professor
Christian Spirituality;Comparative Studies of Mystical Traditions, Interreligious Dialogue
BLOOMQUIST Gregory, Full Professor
Socio-Rhetorical Analysis; Theology of the New Testament; Classical and Jewish Backgrounds of the New Testament; Greek
BONNEAU Normand, Full Professor
Pauline Studies; Synoptic Gospels; Sunday Lectionary
CHIROVSKY Andriy, Full Professor
Peter and Doris Kule Chair of Eastern Christian Theology and Spirituality Patristic and Later Eastern Christian Theology and Spirituality Studies in the Life and Thought of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky (1865-1944) Theology and Spirituality of Byzantine icons Evagrius and the Tradition of Evil Thoughts Studies in the Kyivan Ecclesial Tradition Orthodox-Catholic Ecumenism Spirituality and Health Care
CLIFFORD Catherine E., Full Professor / Director of the Graduate Studies
Ecumenical Studies; Sacramental Theology; Ecclesiology; Vatican II
DEMASURE Karlijn, Dean
Christian family studies; practical theology: epistemology, hermeneutics, narrativity; pastoral care; child sexual abuse; violence and spirituality
DIONNE Christian, Associate Professor
New Testament Exegesis; Gospel Interpretation; Mark and Luke; Pauline Literature; Acts of the Apostles; Biblical Languages; Narrative Criticism
EATON Heather, Full Professor
Ecological dimensions of conflict; Religious aspects of conflict and peace; Gender/feminism, peace and conflict research
GALADZA Peter, Full Professor
Kule Family Chair of Eastern Christian Liturgy; Byzantine Liturgy; Eastern Christian Studies
JILLIONS John Alexander, Associate Professor
Eastern Christian Studies; New Testament; Ecumenism; Practical Theology
MARTÍNEZ DE PISÓN Ramón, Full Professor
Ramón Martínez de Pisón is a Full Professor with the School of Counselling, Psychotherapy and Spirituality (Faculty of Human Sciences/Saint Paul University, Ottawa). He holds doctorates in Theology and Psychology and is the author of numerous books and scholarly articles on Christian Anthropology, sin and evil, death and the afterlife, shame and suicide, religious experience, spirituality and counselling, as well as religion and violence. He underlines the relationships among philosophy, theology, religion, spirituality and psychology. He is a Roman Catholic priest and a member of the religious congregation of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate.
MARTIN Miriam K, Associate Professor
Mercy and Presentation Sister Chair of Newfoundland in Religious Education and Catechetics; Religious Education; Liturgy; Feminist Theology; Eco-theology; and Practical Theology
MATHIEU Yvan, Associate Professor
Biblical Studies; Biblical Languages
MELCHIN Kenneth R., Full Professor
Economics Ethics; Business Ethics; Social and Political Ethics; Lonergan Studies
MICHAUD Jean-Paul, Emeritus Professor
Synoptic Gospels; Johannine Studies; Epistle to the Hebrews; New Testament Apocrypha
MOOREN Thomas, Full Professor
Interreligious dialogue; Islamic Studies; Missiology
NOBEL Michael-Andreas, Associate Professor
General Norms; Procedural Law; Formation of Priests and Permanent Deacons
PAMBRUN James, Full professor
Theological Hermeneutics Theology and Modern Science Creation in the First Testament
PEELMAN Achiel, Full Professor
Faith and Culture; Amerindian Culture and Religion;Native American Spirituality; Interreligious Dialogue; Contextual Theologies
POWER Myrtle, Associate Professor
Religious Education; Catechetics
PROVENCHER Normand, Emeritus Professor
Revelation; Christology; Modernism; Liturgy and Sacramental Theology
REDEKOP Vern Neufeld, Full Professor
Hermeneutical framework for understanding deep-rooted conflict between identity groups; religious based conflict, protesting crowds and police; and the role of identity-based conflict in economic life, methodology of community-based conflict resolution
RENKEN John Anthony, Associate Professor
Temporal Goods; Penal Law; Organization of Particular Churches; Matrimonial Law; Procedural Law
ROLL Susan, Associate Professor
Liturgy; Sacramental Theology
SPATAFORA M.S.F. Andrea, Associate Professor
Research Fields : Apocalypse; Biblical Canon; Canonical Criticism Current Projects : Heavenly Liturgy and Temple in the Apocalypse
VAN DEN HENGEL John, Emeritus Professor
VOGELS Walter, Emeritus Professor
Old Testament; Semiotics
YOUNG Ronald W., Assistant Professor
Missiological History; Theories and Practices of Evangelization; Pneumatology; Theologies of Inculturation; Theology and Mission; Oblatology
- The candidate must hold a MA(Th) degree of the University of Ottawa/Saint Paul with a minimum 75 per cent (B+) average, or its equivalent.
- Among the applicants who meet this requirement, only those whose academic record gives assurance that they are able to succeed and to make a personnal contribution to the field of theological studies will be accepted as candidates to the doctorate.
- The candidate must master either English or French and have a passive knowledge (ability to follow lectures and to read) of the other language.
- To be admitted in the biblical studies concentration, candidates must have a basic knowledge (Level 1 - Introduction) of Hebrew and of Greek. They must acquire an intermediate level (level 2) of competence in Hebrew and Greek before presentation of the thesis project.
- The Faculty may require a candidate to acquire certain skills deemed necessary for the achievement of the research project (for example, knowledge of a language, basic knowledge of other disciplines).
- Provide two confiential letters of recommandataion from professors who have know the applicant and are familiar with the student work.
- Provide a detailed draft of their proposed research project.
Scholarships and Fellowships
Saint Paul University has established a number of fellowships for doctoral students. More information concerning these as well as other forms of financial assistance can be obtained from the Registrar of Saint Paul University.
Graduate Courses and Seminars in Theology
The annual program consists of three courses and one continuous seminar.
Student Transfers From Other Universities
Students who transfer from other universities may receive credit for work already done, but are normally expected to complete the major part of the requirements for the degree at Saint Paul University. Doctoral candidates transferring from another university to complete their degree at Saint Paul University may be given advanced standing for work and residence already completed elsewhere. However, in all such cases, doctoral candidates must complete at least one year of full-time residence, complete 12 credits in their concentration and pass a preliminary examination at Saint Paul University.
Transfer from Master’s to PhD
Program Students enrolled in the MA program may be allowed to transfer to the PhD program without being required to write a master’s thesis provided they meet the following conditions:
- Achievement of an A- average in the last two years of undergraduate studies;
- Completion of at least four graduate courses (12 credits) with a grade of A- or better in each;
- Satisfactory progress in the thesis program;
- Written recommendation by the supervisor;
- Approval by the graduate studies committee.
The student must request permission to fast-track during the fourth session of registration or earlier and must register in the PhD in the fifth session at the latest. Following the transfer, all of the requirements of the doctoral program must be met.
Some additional documents, and in some cases specific forms, are required. For more information, please see the page Step 4: Gather the documents needed for the assessment of your application.
Requirements for the PhD program:
- two regular courses (three credits each) in the area of concentration or to be chosen in consultation with the director of Graduate Studies;
- directed reading course (3 credits);
- comprehensive exam;
- the seminar (3 credits);
- submission and defence of a thesis.
The research director is appointed by the Faculty of Theology before the end of the second session upon consultation with the student.
- The comprehensive examination is intended to verify that candidates have developed a theological culture enabling them to acquire a knowledge and critical judgment in reference to the major questions, the most significant debates and the principal authors, past and present, in their concentration and, more particularly, in the area of their own research.
- THO 9998 is a credited activity which is evaluated upon completion of both a written exam and an oral presentation.
- This examination should take place sometime between the beginning of the third session and the end of the fourth session. It takes place before the presentation of the thesis project.
Refer to the graduate studies procedures manual of the Faculty of Theology for further details on the comprehensive examinations.
Thesis Project Presentation
The thesis topic must be submitted to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for registration after the successful completion of the comprehensive examination.
After the comprehensive examination, upon completion of all course and seminar requirements, and with the approval of the research director, the candidates present their thesis project to professors and graduate students. At this meeting, the candidates present the original hypothesis they have formulated and explain how their project attempts to prove it. The presentation is not perceived as an examination but as an exchange between the participants which may elicit suggestions for improving the project.
The candidate must write, submit and successfully defend a thesis of at least 200 pages. The thesis must be a significant contribution to the advancement of knowledge, embody the results of original research and analysis and be of such quality as to be worthy of publication.
At least six copies of the thesis and of a summary not exceeding 350 words must be submitted to the Faculty of Theology.
The thesis is submitted to an examining board of four to seven examiners, at least one of these being chosen outside the University. If the thesis is accepted by this board, the candidate will be called to defend it. The University community and the general public are invited to attend the defence.
The passing grade in all courses is C+. Students who fail two courses (equivalent to 6 credits), the thesis proposal, or whose research progress is deemed unsatisfactory are required to withdraw.
All students must complete a minimum of six sessions of full-time registration at the beginning of the program.
Duration of the Program
Students are expected to complete all requirements within four years. The maximum time permitted is six years from the date of initial registration in the program.
Thesis Advisory Committee
During the first session of the program, a thesis advisory committee (TAC) is formed for the candidate. The Committee’s membership will be determined by the specific interests of the candidate. It will be composed of the supervisor and 2-3 additional professors. At least one member of the thesis committee, in addition to the supervisor, must be form the Faculty of Theology of Saint Paul University. The TAC is responsible for guiding the student throughout the program, including course selection, the comprehensive examination, thesis proposal, and thesis defense.
A meeting between the student and the Thesis Advisory Committee will take place at least once per session. The thesis examining board may include members who are not part of the TAC.
Theological reflection on and practical application of Canon Law to some areas of pastoral ministry, specifically marriage and reconciliation.
Réflexion théologique et application pratique du droit canonique à certains domaines du ministère pastoral, en particulier au mariage et à la réconciliation.
Interaction between theology and psychology with reference to pastoral ministry, the experience of the believer, the development of faith and of religious attitudes. The pastoral implications of psychological theories of the individual and his/her social relations: impact on cognitive processes, emotion, behaviour, competence, values. Psychological perspectives on the pastoral minister's practice, role and identity.
Interaction between theology and sociology with reference to pastoral ministry. A study of the pastoral implications of socio-historical structures, and of social and cultural change. Analysis of how the social milieu forms the way people think, feel and act, and the reflection on the importance of this formation for values and beliefs. Sociological perspectives on Christian communities' practice, role and identity.
Supervised ministry in a local church or other ministerial setting. Emphasis on the receptive skills and attitudes of the pastoral minister. Theological, sociological, and psychological theories are introduced which will enable the pastoral agent to observe, analyze, and integrate events within the religious community. Cognitive, behavioural, motivational, and emotional components are related to people's individual, social, and interpersonal life. Professional ethical issues are addressed. Codes of ethics in allied professions are used when appropriate. Supervision occurs in small groups under the guidance of a supervisor from the Saint Paul University.
In collaboration with a supervisor the student actively addresses a segment of his ministry drawn from Practicum I (e.g., relationships, or the community, or individuals). Action plans are formulated and carried out. Implications for religious structure, liturgy, homiletics, sacraments are developed and implemented. Emphasis is placed on critical, informed involvement, resource and time management in the exercise of collegial and co-responsible lay and ordained leadership in preaching, liturgical presiding, and community facilitation. Supervision occurs in small groups under the guidance of a supervisor from the Saint Paul University. Prerequisite: IPA 5481.
Interaction entre théologie et psychologie en relation avec le ministère pastoral, l'expérience, la croissance et les attitudes religieuses du croyant. Implications pastorales des théories psychologiques concernant l'individu et ses relations sociales : leur impact sur le processus de connaissance, les émotions, le comportement, la compétence, les valeurs. Perspectives psychologiques sur les pratiques, le rôle et l'identité de l'agent pastoral.
Interaction entre théologie et sociologie en relation avec le ministère pastoral. Implications pastorales des structures socio-historiques et des changements sociaux et culturels. Analyse de l'influence du milieu social sur les façons de penser, de sentir et d'agir et réflexion sur l'impact qu'a cette influence sur ces valeurs et croyances. Perspectives sociologiques sur les pratiques, le rôle et l'identité des communautés chrétiennes.
Ministère supervisé dans une église locale ou un autre contexte ministériel. Importance attachée aux capacités d'écoute et aux attitudes de l'agent pastoral. Présentation de théories théologiques, sociologiques et psychologiques qui amèneront l'agent pastoral à observer, analyser et intégrer les événements dans la vie religieuse de la comunauté. La connaissance, le comportement, la motivation et les émotions en tant que composantes liées à la vie privée, sociale et interpersonnelle de la personne. Problèmes d'éthique professionnelle. Utilisation des codes d'éthique des professions connexes selon les cas. Supervision en petits groupes sous la direction d'un superviseur de l'Université Saint-Paul.
En collaboration avec un superviseur, l'étudiant évalue une partie du ministère exercé au cours du Practicum I (c.-à-d., les relations, la communauté ou l'individu). Formulation et mise en oeuvre de plans d'action. Incidences sur les structures religieuses, la liturgie, l'homélie et les sacrements. Accent mis sur la participation critique et compétente, la gestion du temps et des ressources dans l'exercice collégial et coresponsable du ministère, laïque ou ordonné, de la prédication, de la présidence des célébrations liturgiques et de l'animation communautaire. Supervision en petits groupes sous la direction d'un superviseur de l'Université Saint-Paul. Préalable : IPA 5881.
Theological study of Christian experience and practice in their individual and community dimensions. History of pastoral/practical theology and its contemporary developments. Dialogue between present Christian communities and Christian tradition. Approaches and methods.
Theological reflection on the practice and principles of catechesis. The development and growth of faith in current pastoral contexts. Methodologies, learning styles, growth processes and approaches tailored in view of various groups and settings.
Theological reflection on the liturgical experience and expression of Christian communities. Principles, dynamics, and actualization of liturgical celebration, including sacraments, paraliturgies and prayer services. Roles and ministries in liturgical celebrations.
The Christian community as a social reality embodying beliefs and values. Its relationship to and responsibility toward contemporary society and church: local, national, international. Present social questions and the Christian social tradition.
Types of Christian community. Maintaining the well-being and promoting the growth of Christian communities. Life cycles and life settings of Christian communities.
Study of a specific topic or issue in pastoral theology.
Study of a specific topic or issue in pastoral theology.
Études théologique de l'expérience et de la pratique chrétiennes dans leurs dimensions individuelles et communautaires. Histoire de la théologie pastorale/pratique et son évolution dans le monde d'aujourd'hui. Dialogue entre les communautés chrétiennes actuelles et la tradition chrétienne. Approches et méthodes.
Réflexion théologique sur l'enseignement et les principes de la catéchèse. La formation et la croissance de la foi dans le contexte pastoral actuel. Méthodologie, modes d'apprentissage, processus de croissance, et approches préparées spécialement pour des groupes de divers niveaux.
Réflexion théologique sur l'expérience liturgique des communautés chrétiennes et son expression. Les principes, la dynamique et l'actualisation de la célébration liturgique, y compris les sacrements, les célébrations paraliturgiques et les rencontres de prières. Les rôles et les divers ministères dans les célébrations liturgiques.
La communauté chrétienne comme réalité sociale incarnant croyances et valeurs. Ses relations et responsabilités envers la société contemporaine et l'Église : aux plans local, national et international. Problèmes sociaux actuels et la tradition sociale chrétienne.
Modèles de communauté chrétienne. Le maintien du bien-être et la promotion de la croissance des communautés chrétiennes. Cycles et niveaux de vie des communautés chrétiennes.
Étude d'un sujet ou d'un problème particulier de théologie pastorale.
Étude d'un sujet ou d'un problème particulier de théologie pastorale.
Principles and history of interpretation in theology. Recent developments and debates. The role of classic texts and the question of historical consciousness.
Transmission of the text. Inspiration. Canonicity. The authority of the text and the believing community.
Principles and methods of interpretation. History of interpretation: the Church Fathers, Middle Ages, the Reformation, 19th and 20th centuries.
Hermeneutical questions and methodological foundations of contemporary ethical reflection analysed from a theological perspective.
Analyses, from a theological perspective, of major issues and debates characterizing ethical research in its present context.
Investigation of a particular issue, author, or trend related to any aspect of Eastern Christianity not foreseen by the other courses.
Faith and experience. The Mystery of God. Interpretations and expressions of the experience of God.
The relationship between faith and culture; contemporary issues, questions and challenges. The contextual nature of theology.
Analysis of the methods used in the theological study of spirituality. Spirituality in relation to the human sciences.
Comparative theological study of one or more Christian spiritual traditions and one or more spiritual traditions within other religions to highlight their views of the world, human reality and salvation.
In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of key historical source material from the fourth century to the present.
In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic spiritual classics of Eastern Christianity from the fourth century to the present.
In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic sources that illustrate the evolution of Eastern Christian worship from the fourth century to the present.
An examination of various research tools related to Eastern Christianity and religion in general. An overview of key methods in Eastern Christian exegesis, theology, liturgy, spirituality and Church history and their interface with modern and classical Western approaches.
Study of a particular issue, author, or trend in the hermeneutics and exegesis of the Eastern Churches, e.g. particularities of the Greek, Syriac, or Slavonic versions and their distinctive canons; worship as hermeneutical matrix; scripture and tradition in Eastern Christian reflection; extra-biblical texts; the development of modern Orthodox hermeneutics in dialogue with Western text criticism and methods.
Examination of a particular issue, author, or trend in Eastern Patristic theology, e.g. Greek, Byzantine, Syriac, Coptic or Armenian sources; or the twentieth-century neo-patristic synthesis.
Study of a particular issue, author, or trend in contemporary Eastern Christian theology, e.g. modern philosophical theology (for example, sophiology), and systematics and/or moral theology of the Greek, Russian, Ukrainian, Melkite and Romanian schools in particular; or the systematics and/or moral reflection of non-Byzantine theologians.
In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic texts that have helped shape Eastern Christian theology from the third century to the present.
Study of a particular issue, author, or trend relating to the history of the Constantinopolitan, Armenian, Alexandrian, West Syrian or East Syrian worship traditions and their offshoots, e.g. historical and structural analyses of Eastern patristic sources, Church Orders, euchologies, typica and other worship books; chant traditions, execution, environment; cultural factors conditioning these traditions.
In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of basic texts from the fourth century to the present.
Historical analysis of Eastern Christian institutions, movements or persons in the early, "medieval," or modern periods of one or several of the various Eastern Churches, e.g. pre- and post- Nicene developments; Byzantium; pre-Ephesian and pre-Chalcedonian Churches; the Slavic missions and Kyivan Rus'; the Turkocrateia and subsequent liberation; later Rus' Christianity; the Tsarist era; modern persecution; the Eastern Christian "diaspora."
Investigation of a particular issue, author, or trend related to the periodization, historiography or methodology in general of Eastern Christian history.
In-depth reading, analysis and evaluation of key documents that have shaped East-West rapprochement from 1902 to the present.
Examination, from the perspective of the Eastern Churches, of a particular issue, author, or trend relating to dialogue between Christianity and other religions, e.g. Islamic-Christian encounters in the Middle-East, the Balkans and the former USSR; Slavic Christian-Jewish interaction; Buddhist-Eastern Christian monastic contacts.
A study of methodologies found in different theological fields. Introduction to the diverse resources available for theological research. Preparation of a master's research paper.
Principes et histoire de l'herméneutique en théologie. Développements et débats récents. Rôle des textes classiques et question de la conscience historique.
Transmission du texte. Inspiration. Canon. Autorité du texte et communautés croyantes.
Principes et méthodes d'interprétation. Histoire de l'interprétation : Pères de l'Église, Moyen-Âge, Réforme, 19e et 20e siècles.
Questions herméneutiques et méthodologiques fondamentales de la réflexion éthique contemporaine analysées dans une perspective théologique.
Analyse, dans une perspective théologique, des problèmes et débats majeurs qui caractérisent la recherche éthique dans son contexte contemporain.
Foi et expérience. Mystère de Dieu. Interprétations et expressions de l'expérience de Dieu.
Rapport entre foi et culture; débats contemporains, questions et défis. Nature contextuelle de la théologie.
Analyse des méthodes utilisées dans l'étude théologique de la spiritualité. La spiritualité dans ses rapports avec les sciences humaines.
Étude théologique comparée d'une ou de plusieurs traditions spirituelles chrétiennes et d'une ou de plusieurs traditions spirituelles dans d'autres religions. Un intérêt particulier pour leur vision de l'univers, de la réalité humaine et du salut.
Étude des méthodologies dans les diverses disciplines théologiques. Introduction aux diverses ressources pour la recherche théologique. Préparation du mémoire de maîtrise.
Un examen oral et écrit pendant lequel l'étudiant devra démontrer son aptitude à faire une réflexion critique sur cinq thèmes (et textes correspondants), ayant une portée particulière pour le christianisme oriental. / A written and oral exercise during which the student is expected to demonstrate the ability to reflect critically on five themes (and concomitant texts) of particular significance to Eastern Christian Studies.
Le mémoire, d'environ 40 pages, sera évalué par le directeur, qui doit appartenir à la concentration de l'étudiant, et par un autre professeur de la Faculté de théologie. Le mémoire ne peut être déposé qu'après avoir terminé avec succès le cours de méthodologie (THO 6799 ou THO 6778). / The research paper, approximately 40 pages in length, will be evaluated by both the supervisor, who must be from the student's concentration, and another professor from the Faculty of Theology. The submission of the research paper is dependent upon successful completion of the methodology course (THO 6399 or THO 6378).
Organization and composition of a thesis proposal acceptable to the Faculty of theology and the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. (Graded: S or N/S)
Organisation et rédaction d'un projet de thèse acceptable par la Faculté de théologie et la Faculté des études supérieures et postdoctorales. (Noté : S ou NS)
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