Catholic Theological Union at Chicago

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The Catholic Theological Union at Chicago was founded in 1967. In response to the renewal of the Second Vatican Council, three religious ordersthe Franciscans of Sacred Heart Province, the Servites of the Eastern U.S.A. Province and the Passionists of Holy Cross Provincechose to unite their seminaries in order to more creatively educate for the religious priesthood. It was also their decision to locate the school near other graduate schools of theology and the University of Chicago in order that students and faculty may benefit from and contribute to theological scholarship and ministerial formation in an urban, ecumenical and university setting. Classes began in the fall quarter of 1968, with a faculty of 24 and an enrollment of 108.

After its founding, other religious communities designated Catholic Theological Union as their official theologate: the Augustinians (1968), the Norbertines (1968), the Cincinnati Province and Kansas City Province of the Society of the Precious Blood (1968), the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (1969), the Society of the Divine Word (1970), the Eastern Province of the Congregation of the Holy Ghost (1971), the Claretians (1972), the Viatorians (1972), the Xaverian Missionaries (1973), the Crosiers (1974), the Comboni Missionaries of the Heart of Jesus (1976), the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions (1976), the St. Nicholas Diocese in Chicago for Ukrainian Catholics (1978), the Priests of the Sacred Heart (1979), the Assumption Province of the Franciscans (1980), the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament (1980), the St. Paul of the Cross Province of the Passionists (1981), the Capuchins (1982), the Society of St. Columban (1984), the Redemptorist Fathers and Brothers (1984), the Central United States Province of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (1985), the Western Province of the Congregation of the Holy Ghost (1985), the Oratorians (1987), the Maryknoll Missioners (1988), the St. John the Baptist Province of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (1988), the St. Bonaventure Province of the Franciscan Conventuals (1988) and the Missionaries of St. Charles-Scalabrinians (1992).

The Catholic Theological Union is not a coalition of independent schools. Rather, the participating orders closed their individual theologates and merged their resources into one school, with one administration and faculty. Control is vested in the Board of Trustees. The primary mission of the Catholic Theological Union is the academic and pastoral formation of students preparing for priesthood and for a variety of other ministries in the United States and around the world. The school also provides continuing theological education for clergy, religious and lay persons. The Catholic Theological Union is committed to theological education and scholarship within a community of faith in interaction with a living Catholic tradition and ecumenical, interfaith and cross-cultural perspectives and resources. Through its degree programs and other educational and formational opportunities the Catholic Theological Union strives to educate effective leaders for the church whose mission is to witness Christ's good news of justice, love and peace to people of all nations. Reflecting the diverse cultures, nationalities and races of the women and men who make up the Catholic Theological Union community, the school sees the pursuit of justice, inclusivity and collaboration as integral to its ethos.

See Also: washington theological union.

[k. hughes]

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Catholic Theological Union at Chicago

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