St Athanasius Seminary has prepared Orthodox Theological Course of Studies in a three-year correspondence program designed for those who wish to study Orthodox theology but who are unable to attend an Orthodox seminary. Those ordained as clergy within other Christian churches and who hold a Master of Divinity degree from a non-Orthodox seminary may enroll in the St Athanasius Seminary and take the Aspirant Course and the Priesthood Course as part of their path to ordination in the Orthodox Church. The program is also suitable for anyone seeking advanced training in Christian Education or Youth Ministry, and those who, with the blessing of their bishop, wish to prepare for ordination to the diaconate. While this program is primarily a long-distance program, it does require three units of a Residency Program at St Ignatius of Antioch Formation House
- Anyone interested in studying Eastern Catholic and Orthodox theology but unable to attend an Orthodox seminary
- Clergy converting to Orthodoxy or Eastern Catholic intending to seek ordination, who have earned a Master of Divinity (M. Div.) degree from a non-Orthodox seminary
- Those seeking advanced training in Christian Education or Youth Ministry
- Those who are permitted by their Bishops to prepare for the ministry of the diaconate through means of this course
- To teach Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Theology through directed reading courses and graded written examinations
- To prepare church leaders, both clergy and laity, for focused and informed service to God and the Church
- Directed reading courses in scripture, doctrine, history, liturgy, and practical theology, plus attendance at the Residency Program, three consecutive years, one week each year. The student will also complete a Directed Project for each year of study.
- Communication between mentor and student through published syllabi
- Completion of written examinations twice a year
- The program duration is three years. Applications can be submitted at any time.
For more information, contact: The Vocational Director
Candidates are admitted to begin their seminary program once application is received and reviewed. A letter of admission will be sent out to the candidate.
About the Church
Why Orthodox Seminary?
We live in an era that preaches “New is Better” around every corner. We need to realize that not everything “old” should be thrown out and replaced. Religion is the foremost example of such lack of prudence.
You can always find a religious channel, if not several of them, when you turn on the TV or radio. People yearn for a deeper meaning and ways to simplify their stressful lives. They often turn to these mediums to find a solution to their problems. After listening to one of these channels for a short period of time you’ll most likely hear the phrase “ancient church”, “old church” or “original church”. Ever wondered exactly who they are referring to? Well, we want you to know that the church they are referring to is still very much alive and beating today. For Christ’s Church will never die…it has always been, it is today, and it always will be.
Pentecost was the day on which the Holy Spirit descended upon the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ They were gathered together and given the ability to each speak in a language other than his own, in order to go to different lands, spreading the message of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and the teachings that Christ had imparted to them. Thus was the beginning of the evangelism of the Orthodox Church, which preceded the New Testament and the written Bible by three centuries. The New Testament, in fact, was compiled by the Orthodox Church in the fourth century, lead by the grace of the Holy Spirit.
The Apostles baptized thousands and ordained the first Bishops of the Orthodox Church. This process of ordination and “laying on of hands” is one of seven sacraments in the Orthodox Church. It has provided an unbroken chain of bishops and priests from the time of Christ, through his Apostles, to this very day.
It is important for one to understand that there was only ONE Christian church throughout the first 1,000 years after Pentecost. It was the Orthodox Church.
The Orthodox Church compiled the New Testament in the fourth century. Some of the early writings were chosen to become the New Testament of the Bible. Others were preserved as part of church “Tradition”, a significant part of the Orthodox Church. Many others were deemed to be heretical and discarded. Many of these heretical writings, all known to the Church for centuries, are now being “discovered” and promoted as new information by those who care nothing of the truth but only about profits and ratings.