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House of Studies Academic Programs

The Antiochian House of Studies offers four distinctive programs in Orthodox Theology and ministry. 

St. Stephen’s Certificate of Theology Program

The most popular House of Studies program offers a non-accredited certificate in Orthodox Theology. This certificate is for laymen or clergy with college diplomas who are ready for a rigorous graduate education in Orthodox Theology.

Under the guidance of Orthodox professors and pastors from across the United States, students engage in a challenging three-year distance education program consisting of reading, writing, directed ministry, and a residency. (Note: The certificate program is not currently accredited.)

St. Stephen’s Master of Arts Program

The St. Stephen’s Master of Arts in Applied Orthodox Theology offers an accredited graduate degree for those interested in rigorous graduate education in theology.

Under the guidance of Orthodox professors and pastors from across the United States, students engage in a challenging three-year distance education program consisting of reading, writing, directed ministry, and residency, and a master’s thesis.

St. Stephen's Youth Ministry Concentration

The St. Stephen's Program is a graduate-level directed-reading course of studies in Applied Orthodox Theology. Successful completion of the program leads to a Diploma in Applied Orthodox Theology.

The Youth Ministry concentration in the St Stephen's Program comprises 15 directed-reading courses, three projects, and three weeks of residency (one week each year). Each entering Class completes the coursework, projects, and residency on the same trimester schedule (two long sessions and one residency) during the course of the Program. Each Fall session includes three directed-reading courses; each Spring session includes two reading courses and one directed- project course; and each Summer session includes one week of residency in the Antiochian House of Studies.

Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling Program

The 48-credit Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling program is designed for three specific populations: (1) clergy interested in becoming more skilled in responding to complexly disoriented persons and families under their care, (2) members of the helping professions looking to grow in their ability to offer their work from a strong foundation in Orthodox pastoral theology, and (3) lay persons interested in beginning in or developing in a parish-based, community-based, or diocesan-based ministry in pastoral counseling, crisis response, chaplaincy, or disaster spiritual care.

The program requires a minimum of a bachelor's degree and evidence of Christian maturity in active parish service for admission, and will take a total of 3 years to complete. Along with taking 12 uniquely designed non-resident courses in applied Orthodox pastoral theology and the core pastoral counseling disciplines, students will participate in a two-year, 6-credit, 800-hour practicum which will combine locally-placed work in pastoral counseling with supervision during monthly video-teleconference sessions and two residency weeks. Lastly, students will complete a robust 6-credit thesis, which will be afterwards made available to parishes throughout the USA and beyond.

Along with their degree, graduates will receive two units of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE), and will be eligible to apply for board certification as either an associate pastoral counselor or an associate clinical chaplain with a number of professional pastoral care organizations. Graduates who complete practicum hours with a crisis response organization will also be eligible for a certification with the National Center for Crisis Management (NCCM).

Doctor of Ministry Program

Accredited through the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, the ministry program offers active ministers a chance to deepen their knowledge and widen their impact by earning a doctoral degree. This program is open to those who have already been serving for at least two years in full-time ministry. The D. Min. program consists of coursework taken on site in ministry, ecclesiology, canon law, homiletics, spirituality and pastoral care.

Pastoral Marriage and Family Counseling Program

The Pastoral Marriage and Family Counseling program aims to enhance the ministry of men and women currently serving in parishes. This two-year program is available to Orthodox or non-Orthodox clergy and staff, and provides training in counseling married couples, families, and individuals.

Typical pastoral marriage and family counseling students have a Master of Divinity (or a St. Stephen’s Certificate) and have at least three years of experience as clergy, chaplains, Christian educators, or counselors.