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Master of Divinity

Are you called to serve as a professional pastoral care provider — chaplain, ministerial leader, spiritual director, educator or other career that involves the practice of ministry and theology? Then our Master of Divinity program is for you.

Our curriculum develops a strong and balanced theological foundation within an educational, professional and spiritual context.

In this program, you grow in wholeness through a greater understanding of self, connection with others, the universe and the Divine.

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What You Will Learn

Upon successful completion of the Master of Divinity program, you will be able to:

  • Work as a spiritual counselor/director
  • Integrate psychology and theology using theological reflection models
  • Provide pastoral and spiritual care in various settings
  • Develop strategies for maintaining personal physical, intellectual, social and spiritual wellness while providing pastoral and spiritual care to others
  • Comprehend the cultural foundations, major literary expression and teachings of religious or philosophical systems
  • Identify and clarify one's own position on theology, spirituality, morality and philosophy of life

Career Paths

The M.Div. will prepare you for a role as chaplain in a health care setting or correctional institution, spiritual director of a retreat center, workshop facilitator, educator or other career that involves the practice of ministry and theology.

You may choose to prepare for ordination in a specific tradition, meeting the requirements of your congregation while taking classes in our Master of Divinity program.

You may fulfill chaplain certification requirements through our Master of Divinity coursework. Our program prepares you for licensing with the National Association of Catholic Chaplains (NACC), the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education (ACPE) and the Association of Professional Chaplains (APC). As of 2005, NACC now requires a master's degree in a theological area.

If you are interested in teaching at a college, university or seminary, you might pursue a doctoral degree. The Master of Divinity is a prerequisite for most Doctor of Ministry programs and some Doctor of Philosophy programs.


Marylhurst University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

The graduate religious studies department is an associate member of the Association of Theological Schools.

Marylhurst University Graduate Religious Studies
Program Effectiveness

In 2011-2012, 90 percent of students who completed the Master of Arts in Applied Pastoral Theology and Master of Divinity programs have found placements appropriate to their vocational intention and theological education.

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Dr. Eunice Schroeder, religious studies faculty, was featured in The Columbian in January 2014, in a write-up about her annual New Year's Day labyrinth walk.

Garry Jost Presents at International Conference

Dr. Garry Jost presented at the annual meetings of the Society of Biblical Literature and the American Academy of Religion in Baltimore in November 2013.


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May Day Labyrinth Walk: Walking Mary's Web

You are invited to walk the labyrinth, also known as Mary's Web. In the peaceful ambiance of Hemlock Room in Marylhurst's Villa Maria, walk our ind...


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Thesis Presentation Day: Graduate Religious Studies

Join the Graduate Religious Studies community for Thesis Presentation Day, celebrating the achievements of our students. The 2014 candidates for ...


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Hooding Ceremonies: Master's Degree Candidates

The Hooding Ceremony provides a special focus on advanced degree candidates and their accomplishments. Each graduate department will organize a h...


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