World Religions World Church new Master of Theological Studies program

Author: Margaret McVeigh

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The Department of Theology at the University of Notre Dame has launched a new area of concentration in its Master of Theological Studies (MTS) program: World Religions World Church (WRWC).  Applications for the two-year, full-time program will be due on January 15, 2019, for admission in August 2019.

Students in the MTS program complete 12 credits of coursework for four contiguous semesters (excluding summer) to complete the degree.

The area of World Religions World Church offers students the opportunity to study both global religions and the global Church while also receiving exposure to other areas of Christian theology. In their WRWC coursework students will have the freedom to focus on a particular non-Christian tradition or cultural context of the Church, and to develop their abilities in primary and research languages.

Prof. John Fitzgerald, director of the MTS program at Notre Dame, observed: “Giving keen attention to world religions and the world church is a theological imperative. Just as theology today requires an ecumenical context for effective research and reflection, so also it requires a global context. The new WRWC concentration in our MTS program is thus particularly felicitous and promises to have a major impact on theological education at Notre Dame.”

WRWC includes also a successful doctoral program. Its faculty have also conducted two international conferences (at Notre Dame and in Rome, Italy), published a book (Finding Beauty in the Other, Crossroads 2018), and currently edit the journals  Hindu-Christian Studies and Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations.

The area of WRWC is dedicated to studying the world religions in all of their dimensions along with the global Church and its theological expressions. It prepares students to appreciate the relationship between Christianity and non-Christian religions through the rigorous study of different traditions and to explore the cultural and theological diversity of the Church.

The chair of Department of Theology, Prof. Timothy Matovina, noted that WRWC is a timely addition to the MTS program, “Across all areas of theology today, the context of our work is the global world and church. The distinctive role of the WRWC area in addressing this context make the addition of WRWC critical for the ongoing development of our MTS program.”

The MTS program now includes six areas of concentration: Biblical Studies, History of Christianity, Liturgical Studies, Moral Theology, Systematic Theology, and WRWC. Those interested in applying to the MTS program at Notre Dame should visit Those interested in learning more about the scope and vision of WRWC should visit: