Thanks to a grant received from the Anglican Foundation of Canada in November 2017, Montreal Dio is redesigning its long-standing distance-education program.
For over 40 years, the college’s Reading and Tutorial program has made theological education available to people who are unable to access a residential program. Over the course of 12 units, students are introduced to church history, Bible, theology, ethics, and other foundational theological subjects.
The redesigned program will place greater emphasis on the importance of how context shapes ministry, take account of the increasingly secularist and pluralist world in which students minister, and be mindful of the Competencies for Ordination to the Priesthood agreed in recent years by the Anglican Church of Canada.
This year Geert-Jan Boudewijnse completed the twelve units of the Reading and Tutorial program. Next year, he will enroll in the In Ministry Year and complete the requirements for the Licentiate in Theology.
“I wanted to study theology but was not able to attend classes, be that during the day or evening. The Reading and Tutorial course proved to be an excellent alternative. This course gave me an excellent opportunity to balance the demands of family, work and study. The student must read some books and articles for every unit and then must answer some questions on the basis of these readings. That is: every unit requires writing several essays. I recommend this course for students who can work autonomously, have a strong intrinsic motivation. I was worried about feeling isolated; however, a tutor was assigned and I found this played a very important role in my learning. I met my tutor regularly and discussed my answers with her. Her comments and suggestions for further readings lead to more reflection on the material and therefore to more insightful answers to the questions. I kept in contact with the staff and the other students of the college by attending the Wednesday Eucharist whenever possible.” – Geert-Jan Boudewijns
The first half of the new Reading and Tutorial program will be launched in September 2018 with the rest of the program following in early 2019. Students who complete the program are granted a Certificate in Theology from the college. The program can also serve as the basis for the college’s Licentiate in Theology.