Certificates in Diaconate Discernment

Permanent Diaconate Formation Program

Dioceses across Canada and around the world may inquire with NTC regarding the incorporation of some or all of the online CCS courses we offer. Below is an example of a four-year program. Each diocese may use the program below or design their own program to complement their Diaconate Formation Programs within their diocese. Please contact Sandra Talarico at sandra.talarico@newman.edu for details.

Candidates for the CCS Diaconate Program must be sponsored by their diocese. This program forms one part of the participating Diocesan Diaconate Formation Program and is not meant to be comprehensive. The usual ordination requirements apply.

Year 1 - Aspirancy Year (DDI)

CCS-001 Catholicism

Participants will come to appreciate the purpose of doctrine and the process of theology through which doctrines develop in the Roman Catholic Tradition; develop the skills to articulate personal beliefs, and explain the role and purpose of faith in theology.

Course Outline

CCS-026 Catholic Philosophy

The course will provide a general introduction to Catholic Philosophy.  Participants will consider the existence of God, the reason for evil, the basis of ethics and the principles of political life.

Course Outline 

CCS-002 Scripture

With the introduction of a few basic theories, the course will assist the participants in navigating through the world of the Scriptures and consider the Bible’s history, its development, the cultural factors which influenced the events around the writing of the Old and New Testaments, and the influence of the Church documents on the Bible today.

Course Outline

CCS-006 Catechesis

The course will consider the ministry of catechesis within the context of the Church’s mission to evangelize.  The General Directory for Catechesis will be used to present the purpose, tasks, and content of catechesis, methodologies for various age groups, the influence of the baptismal catechumenate on the catechetical process, and the importance of the catechist’s vocation.

Course Outline

CCS-005 Prayer

The course will survey prayer as essential to the lives of Christian people, as individuals, and within the community of faith. Participants will explore the qualities, forms and expressions of prayer.

Course Outline

CCS-020 Vatican II

Fifty years after it started, the faithful still debate what the changes wrought by the Council mean for the Church today. The course will provide participants with the perspective of people who have lived the unfolding of Vatican II, as well as the opportunity to closely examine six of the Vatican II documents.

Course Outline

CCS-015 Social Justice

The course will introduce participants to the theory and practice of Social Justice through the study of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the seven key themes of Catholic Social Teaching as outlined by the Bishops: the life and dignity of the person; the call to family, community, and participation; rights and responsibilities; option for the poor and vulnerable; the dignity of work and the rights of workers; solidarity; and care for God’s creation.

Course Outline

CCS-016 The Practice of Social Justice

The course will teach participants how to integrate the key themes of Social Justice into their everyday lives.

Course Outline 

To complete this certificate in an academic year students must register for the courses in the following order.

(This does not apply to those who take more than one course per cycle and Certificates are not required to be
completed within a year.)

Cycle 1 - CCS-001

Cycle 2 - CCS-026

Cycle 3 - CCS-002

Cycle 4 - CCS-006

Cycle 5 - CCS-005

Cycle 6 - CCS-020

Cycle 7 - CCS-015

Cycle 8 - CCS-016

Year 2 - Candidates (DDII)

Prerequisite: Year 1 - Aspirancy Year (DDI)

CCS-003 Jesus

Participants will have the opportunity to examine, from a variety of theological perspectives, what we know and believe about the central figure of the Christian faith – Jesus.

Course Outline 

CCS-004 The Sacraments

The course will present an overview of the theology of the sacraments: the public and the liturgical prayer of the Church, as well as discuss of each of the sacraments within the context of its role in the lives of the faithful.

Course Outline 

CCS-008 The New Testament

The course will explore the stories in and behind the writings of the New Testament; introducing the participants to the cultural context, composition, themes and pastoral applications of the New Testament accounts and at the same time, expanding their understanding of the Bible.

Course Outline

CCS-009 The Old Testament

The course will help participants to understand better and appreciate the biblical context, structure, authoring, meaning, and historical impact of the Old Testament accounts.

Course Outline 

CCS-023 The Acts of the Apostles

The course will consider the Book of the Acts of the Apostles and the Letters to the Hebrews, 1 and 2 Peter, James, and Jude.

Course Outline

CCS-024 Paul: Life and Letters

The course will consider the literature of the New Testament attributed to the Apostle Paul. The participants will survey the Apostle’s life, including a close reading of the Pauline Letters.

Course Outline

CCS-025 The Gospel and Epistles of John

The course will consider the Canonical literature traditionally attributed to the Fourth Evangelist: the Gospel of John; 1, 2, and 3 John; and the Book of Revelation.  An introduction of the milieu from which the Johannine Community emanated, such as date, authorship, and provenance, will serve as a backdrop to a closer examination of the literature.

Course Outline 

CCS-040 Theology of God

The course will introduce participants to aspects of the problem of God in the modern era. Topics will include the Trinity in the history of Israel, the Trinity and the Christ event, and the Trinity and the early Church Councils.

Course Outline

To complete this certificate in an academic year students must register for the courses in the following order.

(This does not apply to those who take more than one course per cycle and Certificates are not required to be
completed within a year.)

Cycle 1 - CCS-009

Cycle 2 - CCS 008

Cycle 3 - CCS-004

Cycle 4 - CCS-024

Cycle 5 - CCS-023

Cycle 6 - CCS-025

Cycle 7 - CCS-040

Cycle 8 - CCS-003

Year 3 - Candidates (DDIII)

Prerequisite: Year 2 - Candidates (DDII)

CCS-035 Baptism

The course will reflect on baptism as a drawing into the life of the incarnate Word; explore the roots of baptism in the Bible and early Christian writers; and consider that baptism calls us into union within the Christian community.

Course Outline 

CCS-037 Eucharist

The course will deepen an appreciation of the Eucharist as a sharing in Christ’s life and a carrying out of the covenant between ourselves and God; explore the forgiveness that is present and experienced in the Eucharist; consider the two-fold remembering which is celebrated in the Eucharist: and deepen an appreciation that the Eucharist is a Presence but most of all it is a power for hope and resurrection.

Course Outline

CCS-038 Confirmation

The course will deepen the participants’ appreciation for Confirmation within the unity of the sacraments of initiation; explore the action of the Holy Spirit in the Pentecost and New Testament narratives; and consider the meaning of the laying on of hands and of anointing.

Course Outline

CCS-036 Reconciliation

The course will consider three elements of reconciliation: conversion, confession and celebration; elements where we find God’s unconditional forgiveness, and where we in turn are called to forgive others.

Course Outline 

CCS-041 Holy Orders

Holy Orders will study the three orders: bishop, priest, and deacon, and how the church regards their ordination as a Sacrament.

Course Outline

CCS-017 Pastoral Care

The course will introduce participants to the theology of sickness and suffering, communion rituals, prayer and the Word of God, practical advice on making pastoral visits, taking care of yourself while caring for others, and further information about illnesses affecting those you visit.

Course Outline 

CCS-018 The Practice of Pastoral Care

The course will provide participants with the practical elements required to assist those that are sick and/or suffering from an illness.

Course Outline 

CCS-010 Moral Theology

The course will introduce participants to the moral principles and convictions that give meaning to our actions, as well as examine the role Scripture, the Church, and conscience play in shaping how we act and how our behaviour is a response to the human community.

Course Outline

To complete this certificate in an academic year students must register for the courses in the following order.

This does not apply to those who take more than one course per cycle and Certificates are not required to be
completed within a year.)

Cycle 1 - CCS-035

Cycle 2 - CCS-037

Cycle 3 - CCS-038

Cycle 4 - CCS-036

Cycle 5 - CCS-041

Cycle 6 - CCS-017

Cycle 7 - CCS-018

Cycle 8 - CCS-010

Year 4 - Candidates (DDIV)

Prerequisite: Year 3 - Candidates (DDIII)

CCS-011 Church History I

Church History I is one of two parts of a basic introduction to the History of the Church. Here the participants will study the period from Pentecost to the beginning of the Reformation.

Course Outline

CCS-012  Church History II

(Prerequisite: CCS-011 Church History I)

Church History II navigates the participants from the Reformation through the Second Vatican Council into the 21st century. Here, the participants will explore the cultural, political, social and religious factors which influenced the Church’s journey, and learn how significant men and women emerged to support and challenge the Church’s understanding of herself and her relationship with the world.

Course Outline

CCS-042 Canon Law

Canon Law will study the system of laws and legal principles made and enforced by the hierarchical authorities of the Church to regulate its external organization and government, and to order and direct the activities of Catholics toward the mission of the Church.

Course Outline

CCS-043 Canon Law: Marriage

The Sacrament of Marriage is that sacrament in which a covenant is established between a man and woman, creating a partnership of the whole of life. By its nature marriage is ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of children.

Course Outline

CCS-044 Bioethics

Bioethics is the study of the typically controversial ethical issues emerging from new situations and possibilities brought about by advances in biology and medicine. It is also moral discernment as it relates to medical policy and practice.

Course Outline

CCS-021 Liturgy

As central to the life of the Christian person, liturgy engages the heart, body and soul in praise, thanks and worship of God as Trinity. In the course, the participants will study the ritual and symbolic meaning of liturgy, its structural elements and its importance to Christian worship and life.

Course Outline 

CCS-022 Liturgical Practices

The course will introduce participants to the practical elements of worship and life: Sunday and the Paschal Triduum, Lent-Easter and Advent-Christmas, the Liturgy of the Word, the Liturgy of the Eucharist, and the Environment and Music.

Course Outline

CCS-045 The New Evangelization

The New Evangelization will study how each of us is called to deepen our faith, believe in the Gospel message and to go forth to proclaim the Gospel.

Course Outline

To complete this certificate in an academic year students must register for the courses in the following order.

(This does not apply to those who take more than one course per cycle and Certificates are not required to be
completed within a year.)

Cycle 1 - CCS-042

Cycle 2 - CCS-011

Cycle 3 - CCS-012

Cycle 4 - CCS-021

Cycle 5 - CCS-022

Cycle 6 - CCS-044

Cycle 7 - CCS-043

Cycle 8 - CCS-045