Close-up shot of two Theology books with a class going on in the background.

Theology: Spiritual Direction Certificate

The Theology: Spiritual Direction Certificate (SDC) program from St. Catherine University in St. Paul, MN prepares individuals to engage in the ministry and practice of Christian spiritual direction. You will discern a potential calling to this ministry as you engage in theological study and spiritual formation, deepening your own spiritual development as you train to accompany others on their journeys.

Program Highlights

Format: Evenings; On campus or Online

Completion time: 3–4 years

Credits: 28

Cost per credit (2021–2022): $710

Start: Spring 2022

Scholarship Opportunities

A St. Catherine University education is one of the most worthwhile investments you’ll ever make, and we are committed to helping you find ways to make that investment affordable.

New SDC students are considered for up to $5,000 in funding from the following scholarship programs: service and leadership, diversity, alumni, and academic achievement.

Graduate assistantship funding may be available for qualified students after they begin the program. 

SDC students employed by a St. Kate's corporate or community partner may be eligible for a 10% tuition discount.

Graduate students may also be eligible for loan and grant programs.

Tuition Remission for Ministers
The SDC program awards a ministry tuition remission discount of 50% to qualified ordained or lay ministers from the ecumenical Christian Church. To learn more about this opportunity, contact the program coordinator at 651-690-6072.


Deepen Your Spiritual Development and Prepare to Help Others

Our students benefit from the academic depth and ecumenism that characterize our program. We emphasize thoughtful engagement with the insights of spiritual movements and figures from the Christian tradition — this distinguishes us from other graduate theology programs in the area.

The SDC’s academic component includes core theological course work in the history of Christian spirituality, scriptural studies, systematic theology and spirituality coursework in discernment, spiritual direction, and psycho/socio-spiritual development.

You will receive ongoing individual spiritual direction and participate in retreats and workshops as part of the spiritual formation requirements. Practicum and supervisory groups provide you with practical experience with the support of peers and professionals so that you are fully prepared to work in your area upon completing the program.

Careers in Theology

The number of people seeking spiritual direction among the laity and across Christian denominations has increased dramatically over the last thirty years. People from diverse paths of life are attracted to our program, including community members exploring their faith and spirituality, pastors and ministers looking to deepen or renew their current ministries, as well as lay people who are seeking a mid-career transition from other professions.
Our program prepares spiritual directors to practice in churches or congregations, retreat center settings, public settings such as wellness centers, and independently in your home or office. The SDC addresses the increasing demands for credentials and competency in the field. Graduates also find that the contemplative skills and theological knowledge gained through participation in the program are transferable to a wide variety of other assistance-based professions.

Theology: Spiritual Direction Certificate (SDC) Program Overview

In the graduate theology program, students will have academic training in Christian thought by way of a thorough study of Scripture, systematic theology, and the history of Christian spirituality. The program focuses on Christian classics, past and present. Studies focus on the Roman Catholic tradition, but also include representative Eastern Orthodox, Protestant, Jewish, and other interfaith texts. The program’s concentration on spirituality offers an in-depth examination of the theory and practice of Christian spirituality, past and present.

Explore the courses


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