About Us

The mission of the Department of Religious Studies is to discover, explore, and analyze religious experience in its various manifestations emphasizing the Roman Catholic tradition, in dialogue with the other Christian traditions and with the world religions.

Who We Are

We are a community of scholars serving the University, academic and local community by teaching, research, prophetic criticism, and action. We study religious experience, expression and thought, with special emphasis on the Roman Catholic tradition while dialoguing with other Christian traditions and other world religions. We are committed to lifelong growth through effective learning in undergraduate general education, an undergraduate major, M.A. programs in theological studies and pastoral ministry, and a Ph.D. in theology centered on the U.S. Catholic experience.

What We Believe

We believe that understanding the human condition necessarily involves understanding religious experience and expression. We believe that the liberal learning to which the College of Arts and Sciences is committed requires the study of religion which opens the imagination to manifestations of the sacred in multiple cultures and enables critical understanding of its inculturated expressions. In keeping with the Catholic and Marianist character of the University, the department is committed to the education of the whole person so that learning can be integrated into the daily life, service activities, faith, and community building.

Our Competitive Advantages

Students will find value in our undergraduate and graduate programs because we:

  • Provide information and perspective on religion as a powerful and pervasive element of human life
  • Provide an environment which fosters ethical reflection for responsible participation in society
  • Provide a strong major centered in Catholic theology; offer sustained faculty-student interaction at all levels
  • Enable students to connect academic work with experience through practicums, liaison opportunities with campus ministry, and service-learning options
  • Build creative theological work on empirical and historical investigation at the graduate level