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Grow in your faith
and leadership

Master of Pastoral Studies (Online)

Also available on campus.

Christians are called to “go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15). Lay people can do so as professionals or volunteers in churches and schools or in their everyday lives at home, work, and the larger communities to which they belong.

This pastoral studies online degree program is practical, transformative, international in scope, and open to students of all faiths. It prepares students to work in a variety of contexts, including parishes, schools, diocesan offices, secular workplaces, non-profits, or public sector work and the helping professions, such as healthcare and social work.

Additional Dual Degree Options:

Auto [Expedited] Admit Program for LOYNO Students

Are you a Loyola New Orleans graduating senior or current alum? You could be eligible for the auto admit program. The Pastoral Studies program will auto admit eligible Loyola New Orleans students who meet the following criteria:

  • students with a 3.0 GPA or higher and submission of a resume will be automatically admitted. 

To apply as an auto admit, submit one of the following applications:

Request Information

Start the conversation — Learn more about your program of interest.

How To Apply

Review the admission requirements for Loyola's Online Master of Pastoral Studies program.

Master of Pastoral Studies or Master of Religious Education

Which is right for you?

Both the Master of Pastoral Studies (MPS) and Master of Religious Education (MRE) are practical and emphasize the importance of the educational process in forming students and faculty into a community of learners. Loyola’s Master of Religious Education is designed for those interested in faith formation, not only in schools and churches but in any setting that can be conceived of as educational. The MRE degree does not provide a license or certification but may qualify graduates for teaching positions, depending on the employer’s requirements.

Loyola’s MPS requires the same core courses but also allows students to specialize in a wider range of focus areas, which qualify graduates for a wider range of jobs — in churches, schools, and beyond — such as with youth and the environment, in non-profits, and within the helping professions. MPS students have ample opportunity to explore both degrees, and applicants can begin in one program and move to the other if they wish, as the core requirements are the same. Students are encouraged to work with their academic advisor to choose the degree that suits their career goals.


Master of Pastoral Studies Curriculum

The Master of Pastoral Studies program at Loyola University New Orleans provides the biblical, theological, and spiritual grounding on which to build specializations in youth ministry, spirituality, and pastoral care. It also enables people of faith to connect ministry to leadership, the environment, digital culture, and the working world.


Degree Overview

36 Credits

master of pastoral studies


Loyola’s Master of Pastoral Studies degree online consists of 36 credit hours, which includes:

  • Core courses (18 credit hours)
  • Focus area courses (9 credit hours)
  • Elective courses (6 credit hours)
  • Capstone course (3 credit hours)

Check out the University Bulletin to view further curriculum information about Loyola's online pastoral studies program and download a degree worksheet.

online master of pastoral studies online degree.

What can you do with an online Master of Pastoral Studies degree?

discover your full potential

Loyola’s 100% online Master of Pastoral Studies online program will prepare you with the skills and knowledge needed to advance in a wide range of careers that spread the Good News, bringing people closer to God and their communities, in jobs like:

  • Youth Minister
  • Church/Diocesan Administrator
  • Chaplain
  • Retreat Director
  • Healthcare Worker
  • Music Minister
  • Pastoral Associate
  • Director of Spiritual Care
  • Social Worker
  • Non-Profit Leader
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