Answer your calling: Become a pastoral minister


Graduates of USM's Pastoral Ministry program are prepared for careers in fields such as lay ministry, youth ministry and religious education in a parish setting. Some choose to work as pastoral associates or religion teachers at the primary or secondary school levels. Further studies in ministry can lead to a career as an ethics consultant, chaplain in a hospital, prison, campus ministry, the military, law enforcement, or higher education.

The University of Saint Mary offers Kansas City’s only bachelor’s degree in pastoral ministry. The program will prepare you to become an active lay minister in a faith-based community. While USM is a Catholic institution, and therefore committed to the mission and ministry of Jesus, the program is open to people of all faiths.

As a pastoral ministry major you will work closely with professors who will support you as you develop the skills needed to succeed in the helping professions. The program will provide models for exploring your faith, and will teach you to cultivate a healthy use of self for ministry. It will prepare you to live out the mission of your faith community on behalf of the people of God.

Program courses explore unique learning opportunities including:

  • Retreats for local junior high and high school students

  • Regional, timely conferences

  • Social and cultural discussion, debates and events

  • Annual pastoral ministry retreat