St. Peter's Seminary
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Reading Course

Instructor:  Rev. Al Momney, BA, MDiv., STL


Vatican II, Lumen Gentium, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, 1964.

Vatican II, Presbyterorum Ordinis, Decree on the Ministry and Life of Priests, 1965.

Vatican II, Apostolicam Actuositatem, Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity, 1965.

Pope John Paul II, Christifideles Laici, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation on the Vocation and the Mission of the Lay Faithful in the Church and in the World, 1988. (available at UWO Bookstore)

Pope John Paul II, Pastores Dabo Vobis (I Will Give You Shepherds). Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation, 1992.

Pope John Paul II, Vita Consecrata (The Consecrated Life). Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation, 1996.

Catechism Of The Catholic Church, nos. 1533-1600.

Sr. Sara Butler, The Catholic Priesthood and Women: A Guide to the Teaching of the Church. (Available at the Western Bookstore)


This course is a historical, doctrinal, liturgical, and pastoral study of the Sacrament of Order, drawing upon key ecclesial documents, and contemporary theology; a reflection on the role and mission of the Lay Faithful in the life of the Church and in the world; an appreciation of the call to consecrated life in the Church and in the world.


1. To appreciate and understand the historical, doctrinal and liturgical development of ministry in the Church, with special emphasis on the ordained ministry.

2. To explore the interrelation of the priesthood of the faithful and the ordained priesthood.

3. To consider contemporary models of ordained and lay ministry in the Church and Society.

4. To study the purpose and mission of the consecrated life in the Church and world.


1. A Survey Of The Development Of Order And Ministries

The Jewish Priesthood

The Priesthood of Christ

The Priesthood of the Apostles

New Testament Witness to Ministry

The Second and Third Centuries and the Patristic Era

The Early Middle Ages and The Scholastic Period

The Reformation, Council of Trent and Counter-Reformation 

2. The Second Vatican Council and Beyond

Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (Lumen Gentium)

Decree on the Ministry and Life of Priests (Presbyterorum Ordinis)

I Will Give You Shepherds (Pastores Dabo Vobis)

Contemporary Theological Reflection On Priestly Life and Ministry

3. Special Questions

The Subject of Ordination and the Question of Women and Ordination

The Diaconate

The Ordination Rite

4. The Ministry of the Baptized

Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity (Apostolicam Actuositatem)

The Vocation and the Mission of the Lay Faithful in the Church and in the World (Christifideles Laici)

Contemporary Theological Reflection on the Role of the Laity in the Church and in the World

5. The Relationship Between The Priesthood of the Baptized and of the Ordained

Collaborative Ministry in the Church

6. The Ecumenical Situation Today

Insights into the state of ecumenical discussions on the questions of ordained ministry

7. The Consecrated Life

The Consecrated Life (Vita Consecrata)


1. A study paper on a topic of your choice, related to either: (1) The Sacrament of Holy Order, (2) The Role and Mission of the Lay Faithful, or (3) The Role and Mission of the Consecrated Life; 12 pages; 12-point font; double-spaced; the 12 pages do not include the title page, bibliography and footnotes. Due date to be determined. (60% of final mark)

2. Final Oral Exam. (40% of final mark)