Doctor of Ministry

Doctor of Ministry Program

The University of St. Mary of the Lake / Mundelein Seminary offers the terminal degree of Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.).  Bring your ministry into dialogue with the best insights from Scripture, Tradition, and human sciences.  The goal of the degree program is to develop pastoral leadership skills that meet the missionary needs of the church in today’s challenging cultural environment.  Through case studies and projects, drawn from ministerial experiences, scholars engage in integration and processing with the goal of acquiring advanced competency in ministerial leadership.   To achieve this goal, the program provides scholars with a community of practice where ministerial integration is combined with formal course work and research supervision. The D.Min. program is approved by the Association of Theological Schools.


The Doctor of Ministry program is a part-time, residential program that meets three-weeks of the year, for two years;  a total of 6 weeks.   Each week is a 3-credit course framed by pre-reading assignments and a major academic paper following the class.  In addition to the residential intensive courses (Sunday evening to Friday Noon), students fulfill the remaining requirement of 9 credits through three on-line courses from the University of St. Mary of the Lake.  The total number of credits required for the D.Min. is 30 credit hours of which, 3 credits are achieved through the Doctor of Ministry thesis project.

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Only those who fulfill the following pre-requisites will be considered for admission:

  • Involvement in at least three years of full-time pastoral ministry or equivalent
  • The M.Div. degree or its equivalent, 63 semester hours in theological disciplines plus 9 hours of supervised ministerial training (e.d. C.P.E., Parish Internship, Ministerial Practicum)
  • Manifest capability for advanced theological and ministerial education
  • Personal capacity for engagement in a peer-group oriented program
  • The potential value of the candidate’s contribution in advancing and improving ministerial life

The next cycle of the Doctor of Ministry and Post-Master Certificate programs will begin in Summer 2020.  The application and recommendation forms can be found below:

 All inquiries should be directed to:

Doctor of Ministry Program

Institute for Pastoral Leadership
1000 East Maple Ave.
Mundelein, IL 60060
Telephone: 847-970-4804
Email: kszamocki@usml.edu

D.Min application form 2.4.2020 vs5

DMin Recommendation Form 2019-2020a

Course Titles and Descriptions

DM840 Self-Leadership: transformative ministerial integration, Summer, 2020, Residential Intensive

This course is focused on helping the minister to acquire a deeper level of self-understanding. By focusing on how Christian leaders are first disciples of Christ, this course will help students learn additional skill for using their own spiritual and human realities to strengthen and energize their pastoral leadership.

DM841 Ethics in Leadership, Summer 2020, Residential intensive

This course focuses on the ethical challenges faced by today’s pastoral leaders in a variety of environments.  Students will learn to apply ethical principles drawn from the Tradition to their own pastoral contexts.

DM842  Thesis Research and Proposal Writing, Fall 2020, (Online)

This course will explain the Thesis Project process for the Doctor of Ministry.  The course will also equip the students with the research and writing tools necessary to identify and harness important literature relevant to their project.

DM843 Christian Leadership and the Human Sciences, January 2021, Residential Intensive

This course will provide a student with the best insights from human sciences applicable to pastoral ministry.  Insights drawn from the human sciences, such as psychology, sociology, anthropology, and the humanities will help students to see more clearly the deeper human realities of themselves and their flock.  A central focus on the course will be on how human sciences and literature help us to understand the realities of leadership, the nature of social groups, and team dynamics.

DM844 Christian Leadership in the Tradition, Spring 2021, (Online)

This course will help students better understand how their ministry fits into the longer tradition of Christian leadership.  Different models of Christian leadership will be discussed, so that students can harness the richness and diversity of the full Christian Tradition to improve their own ministry.   This course will help students learn how to draw practical lessons and inspiration from the History of the Church.

DM845  Christian Leadership and Scripture, Summer 2021, Residential Intensive

The foundation of all Christian action must be in Divine Revelation.  This course will help students to gain access to models of leadership present in Scripture, especially in the prophets and the apostles.  After learning to be better leaders in a Scriptural perspective, this course also emphasizes how to lead through the preaching of the Word, in both liturgical and non-liturgical settings.

DM846  Leadership in the Vision of Aparecida, Summer 2021, Residential Intensive

The Catholic Church today is a dynamic and growing religious community.  Much of this growth is occurring in the global south.  The creative insights from that region are not well known in the English-speaking world.  The Aparecida document captures this vision for growth, focused on Mission and Evangelization.  This course will address the vocation of the baptized to become missionary disciples of Jesus and how pastoral leaders can engage them in a process of formation for missionary discipleship.  This course will also place the vision of Aparecida into dialogue with important emphases already present in North America such as New Evangelization and Intentional Disciples.

DM847  Ecclesial Leadership, Fall 2021, (Online)

This course will provide students with the best insights of how to be leader in today’s church, particularly in the context of a parish ministry.

DM848  Leadership in an American Religious Context, January 2022, Residential Intensive

This course will provide students with a snap shot of the current American religious landscape.  Topics include the history of American religious culture, Ecumenical and Inter-faith relationships, developing pastoral realities, and the American religious ethos in the 21st century.

DM849 Doctoral Thesis Project


Financial Information:

Doctor of Ministry Costs:

$20,000.00 for 3 online courses and 6 one-week intensives including  tuition, room and board paid over two year or $10,000.00 per year.