"This is a transformative journey that involves the whole community."

Ratio Fundamentalis

STPSU’s Pre-Theology Program initiates men with either no background in philosophy or no previous formation experience into seminary formation and prepares them for theological formation.  During this stage of discipleship, Pre-Theologians are encouraged to recover a sense of wonder.  In learning about the natural world, seminarians are taught to go beyond the merely empirical and to seek knowledge about the Creator.  Thus from study of the natural world around us and its principles, seminarians ultimately are led to knowledge about God and supernatural reality.
Following the Program for Priestly Formation, STPSU’s Pre-Theology Program offers a comprehensive curriculum in Philosophy through which seminarians are guided through the great philosophical questions and the Catholic philosophical tradition.  As the well-formed human intellect demands a truly liberal education, the Pre-Theology Program also features coursework in the Humanities, introductory Theology, and Latin.


To help Pre-Theologians transition to the context of seminary formation, they are housed together in John Vianney Hall.  By living together, eating together, and praying together, the Pre-Theologians build lasting bonds of fraternity and develop the habit of prayer.  They live under the guidance of the Director of Pre-Theology Formation, a priest who attends to the particular formation needs of Pre-Theologians. 

STPSU’s Pre-Theology Plan of Studies is as follows:

Pre-Theology I

Fall Spring
History of Philosophy I/II (6) History of Philosophy III/IV (6)
Humanities I: Literature (3) Philosophy of Nature (3)
Logic (3) Humanities II: Music, Art, Poetry (3)
Classical Latin I (3) Classical Latin II (3)
Academic Writing I (1) Academic Writing II (1)

Pre-Theology II

Fall Spring
Philosophical Anthropology (3) Epistemology (3)
Metaphysics (3) Ethics (3)
Introduction to Sacred Scripture (3) Philosophy of God (3)
Catholic Doctrine I (3) Catholic Doctrine II (3)
Introduction to Spirituality (3) Capstone: Special Topics (3)