Continuing Education

Continuing Education

Continuing Education at the Franciscan School of Theology offers affordable, high-quality instruction by some of the world’s foremost Franciscan scholars and educators. FST continuing education courses are open to the public and take place at our campus on the beautiful grounds of Historic Old Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside, California.

This July the Franciscan School of Theology will offer four sessions exploring themes on the Franciscan Social Vision in today’s Church and society. Topics will range from Franciscan poverty and peace-making historically and in the present day, the challenges and blessing of Catholic Family Life, and lay Franciscans’ special vocations of social engagement.

Participants may take one, two, three, or all four courses. Classes are held 9:15-12:30 Monday through Friday and may be taken for continuing education credit. Classes cost $250 per one-week session (one CEU unit). See course descriptions and registration details below.

Contact Registrar Laurie Greenberg at, 760-547-1800, ext. 200, for more information.

Summer 2018 Continuing Education

The Path of Beauty: Walking with a Discerning Heart (July 9–13)

In this weeklong class, we explore the foundational Franciscan experience of Beauty and how it informs a life of growth in spiritual wisdom. We consider what the key elements and patterns of Franciscan discernment might be and how best to bring them to birth in our minds, hearts, and lives.   Instructor: Dr. Mary Beth Ingham, CSJ (one CEU $250)

About the Instructor

Dr. Mary Elizabeth Ingham, CSJ comes to FST from Loyola Marymount University where she was chair of the Philosophy Department and Professor of Philosophy. She received the President’s Fritz B. Burns Teaching Medal in 2000.

Dr. Ingham was President of the American Catholic Philosophical Society in 2009 and has served on the Franciscan Institute Summer faculty.

Dr. Ingham was part of the organizing committee for the “Quadruple Congress” in celebration of the 8th centenary of John Duns Scotus’ death in 2008, and she edited the first volume: Duns Scotus, Philosopher (with Oleg Bychkov).

Communion and Critique: Franciscan Religious Practice and Spiritual Transformation in the 21st Century (July 16–20)

Contemporary Franciscans, both lay and religious, live within a global society shaped by cultural, political, and economic forces often beyond their control or knowledge.  How might the religious disciplines of the Franciscan spiritual tradition lead contemporary believers into lives of freedom, enjoyment, and communion together? How might this tradition’s approach to poverty, chastity, obedience, and prayer join married and celibate life in a common mission?  This course considers the shared life of religious and lay discipleship that embodies an engaged communal transformation through  God’s indwelling in the heart, self-mastery,  contemplation, and a life of redemptive suffering for others. Instructor: Dr. Joseph Chinnici, OFM (one CEU $250)

About the Instructor

An Oxford-educated historian, Joe is a widely-respected scholar, teacher and speaker in the history of American Catholicism and the development of Franciscan theology and spirituality. Past president of the American Catholic Historical Association (2007-2008), he authored the seminal work Living Stones: The History and Structure of Catholic Spiritual Life in the United States (1989, 1996). His most recent book is When Values Collide: The Catholic Church, Sexual Abuse, and the Challenges of Leadership (2010). He is also general editor of the Franciscan Heritage Series, which makes available to contemporary audiences the spiritual, theological, and social inheritance of St. Francis of Assisi. Apart from his teaching duties, Joe has served in various administrative posts throughout his career: nine years as Provincial Minister for the Franciscan Friars of the Saint Barbara Province, two stints as Academic Dean at the Franciscan School of Theology, Chairman of the Commission for the Retrieval of the Franciscan Intellectual Tradition (CFIT, 2000-2013), and President of the Franciscan School of Theology (2011-2016).

Praying with St. Francis: An Introduction to Contemplation (July 23–27)

St. Francis of Assisi’s life and writings open up a new chapter in the way Christians pray.  Based on their personal reflection on the Gospel, Francis and his companion St. Clare show how we can move from words about God to an experience of God.  In this one-week course, we will read some of their writings, and learn from other spiritual teachers who followed them over the centuries.  We will discover the importance of the emotions in our life of prayer, the creative use of our imagination to help us to pray, and the goal of this prayer in quiet union with God.  Poetry, art, and music have been inspired by this Franciscan spiritual tradition, and we will use them to complement written words, and showing how beauty can help us in our journey. Instructor: Dr. William Short, OFM (one CEU $250)

About the Instructor

Brother Bill Short, OFM, with a special love of things medieval, is a scholar equally comfortable in the fields of spirituality, Christian history, and the Franciscan tradition. He researches, writes, lectures and translates in four languages. After graduate studies in Berkeley and Rome, he was appointed to a teaching position at FST, where he has subsequently served as Academic Dean and President. A full-time professor at the Franciscan School of Theology, Brother Bill’s frequent lectures, retreats and workshops outside the school educate the wider community about the Franciscan tradition.

Registration and Payment

To register please complete the Registration Form and send with your payment to:

Laurie Greenberg, Registrar
Franciscan School of Theology
4050 Mission Avenue
Oceanside, CA 92057

You may also email or fax your form to the registrar at, fax: (760) 547-1807. Registrants may pay by phone with credit or debit card for an addition $1.00. If your sponsoring organization requires an invoice, please include invoicing instructions on your registration form.

Accommodation and Meals

A limited number of rooms are made available to FST Continuing Ed students here on the Mission grounds at the Mission Retreat Center—first come, first served. $100 per night includes meals. Some weekend limitations apply. Please contact the Mission Retreat Center directly at (760) 757-3659 for more information about accommodations and meals

Refund Policy

In order to cover the administrative expenses incurred with registration, FST will refund 90% of tuition up to the week prior to session, and 70% the week prior to session start. No refund given for cancellations after that date.