Washington Theological Union (WTU) was a Roman Catholic graduate school of theology and ministry in Washington, D.C. It ran continuously from 1968-2013. It was founded by religious communities of men for education and training for the priesthood and expanded to include theological education for religious communities of women as well as deacons, lay men and women and members of other faith traditions from the United States and many foreign countries.
The many graduates from WTU serve in a variety of ecclesial positions, mostly in the Catholic Church: bishops and archbishops, university presidents, national and diocesan officials, educators, church organizations, chaplains, and many as parochial pastors, deacons, lay leaders and ministers.
I graduated from Washington Theological Union in 2006 with two graduate degrees – a Masters of Divinity degree and a Master of Arts in Systematic Theology. The M.Div. degree, traditionally available to candidates for the Roman Catholic priesthood can be sought by lay persons as well. The Class of 2006 saw one of the largest lay cohorts in the history of the school receive the M.Div. – a total of four students. In total, I was one of a handful of lay students to pursue and obtain this 4-year degree in the history of the school over its 45 year history.
Lay Ministry Formation Program Prayer & Music Director (2003-06)
During my time as a graduate student at the Union, I served in many volunteer leadership roles, including overseeing the creative development and implementation of prayer services and liturgies associated with the lay ministry formation program required for all lay students pursuing pastoral degrees at the school. These services, often based upon and adapted from the traditional Liturgy of the Hours included contemporary and engaging forms of common prayer, including contemporary liturgical music chosen for its assembly appropriateness and participation as well as its theological meaning. I was responsible for preparing each service, the related worship booklet, overseeing appropriate art and environment, music selection, and coordination of the music ministry by a volunteer choir for each event.
You may view samples of some of these prayer programs below. (Note: Musical scores have been obfuscated for copyright reasons.)
Graduation Ceremony Video (2006)
In collaboration with a number of my student colleagues, faculty and administrators, I oversaw the musical selections and activities associated with the Union’s commencement in 2006, which included the conferral of my Masters of Divinity Degree and Master of Arts in Systematic Theology.
Guest Lecturer (2010-12)
I was able to present on particular topics to graduate level theology courses related to my theological and ministerial areas of expertise, including “Liturgical Foundations of Catholic Social Teaching,” lay ministry formation, the theology of lay ecclesial ministry, and theology of vocation.