• Schedule is subject to change. Please check the priory website, dhspriory.org, for the latest information.
  • Monday - Friday

    7:00am Mass & Morning Prayer
    12:00pm Rosary & Midday Prayer
    5:30pm Office of Readings & Evening Prayer
    9:00pm Compline (Monday - Thursday)
  • Saturday

    8:00am Mass with Morning Prayer
    12:00pm Office of Readings & Midday Prayer
    5:20pm Rosary
    5:40pm Evening Prayer
  • Sunday

    8:30am Office of Readings & Morning Prayer
    11:15am Mass
    5:20pm Rosary
    5:40pm Evening Prayer
    9:00pm Compline
  • Tuesday, October 17, 6 PM

    Muslim Philosophers and the Christian Middle Ages

    Prof. Thérèse Cory (Notre Dame)

    University of Oklahoma, Nielsen Hall 170

    Sponsored by the Thomistic Institute at OU

  • Wednesday, October 18, 6 PM

    Evil: The Great Accuser of God’s Existence

    Fr. John Harris, O.P.

    University College Dublin, Room B101 in the Newman Building

    Co-sponsored by the Thomistic Institute and the Newman Society at UCD.

  • Thursday, October 19, 6 PM

    Understanding Nietzsche’s Postmodern Critique of Christianity

    Fr. Thomas Joseph White, O.P. (PFIC/Thomistic Institute)

    Harvard University, Emerson 108 in Harvard Yard

    Sponsored by the Thomistic Institute and the Harvard Catholic Graduate Student Chaplaincy

  • Thursday, October 19, 7 PM

    Blinded by Scientism? The Proper Role-and Limits-of Science in the Quest for Truth

    Prof. Edward Feser (Pasadena City College)

    U.C. Berkeley, Barrows 166

    Sponsored by the Thomistic Institute at UC Berkeley

  • Friday, October 20

    Grades Due on Incompletes from the Previous Semester

  • Friday, October 20, 12:30 PM

    Where Rights Come From and What They Mean for Healthcare

    Fr. Thomas Joseph White, O.P. (PFIC/Thomistic Institute)

    Harvard Medical School (final room location TBA)

    Sponsored by the Thomistic Institute, the Christian Medical and Dental Association, and the Catholic Students Association

  • Tuesday, October 31

    7:30 PM - Vigil of All Saints, DHS Chapel

  • Friday, November 3

    Last Day to Withdraw from Classes with a “WD” Grade

  • Monday, November 6, 3:30 PM

    Reading Between the Lines: Neglected Notation in Dominican Mass Manuscripts

    Dr. Eleanor Giraud (University of Limerick)

    Aquin Hall, PFIC

  • Wednesday, November 8, 6PM

    The Drama of Grace: Sigrud Undset and the Narrative of Conversion

    Fr. Raymund Snyder, O.P. (Thomistic Institute)

    Catholic Information Center, D.C.

  • Thursday, November 9, 7 PM

    Does God Exist? An Argument for God’s Existence from Thomas Aquinas

    Fr. James Brent, O.P. (PFIC)

    JMHI Preclinical Teaching Building (PCTB)

    Sponsored by the Hopkins Thomistic Institute

  • Saturday, November 11, 1 PM

    “Angels, Demons and Aquinas”

    The Catholic Center at NYU

  • Monday, November 13 - Friday, November 17

    Registration for Spring 2018 Classes

  • Wednesday, November 22 - Friday, November 24

    Thanksgiving Recess

    No Classes; Offices and Library close at noon on Wednesday)

  • Tuesday, December 5 - Monday, December 11

    Course Evaluation Week

  • Friday, December 8

    Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception

    No Classes; Offices and Library Closed

  • Saturday, December 9, 12 PM

    The Virgin Mary: Full of Grace and Mother of God

    Fr. Andrew Hofer, O.P. (PFIC)

    The Catholic Center at NYU

  • Monday, December 11

    Reading Day

    No Classes; Offices and Library Open

  • Tuesday, December 12, 4PM

    The Rational Mystery: The Promise of Catholicism in the 21st Century

    Fr. Thomas Joseph White, O.P. (PFIC)

    Alexander Reading Room, Baylor University

    Sponsored by the Thomistic Institute and the Baylor University Honors College

  • Tuesday, December 12 - Friday, December 15

    Final Examination Period

  • Friday, December 15

    Semester Ends

  • Monday, December 18 - Wednesday, December 20

    Special Exam Period

  • Thursday, December 21

    Library and Offices Close at Noon for Christmas Break

    PFIC reopens on January 2, 2018

  • Saturday, April 14, 6 PM, 2018

    Eighth Annual Dominican Spring Gala

    Cloister of the Dominican House of Studies

  • Monday, May 7, 2018

    Annual Save the Rare Books Golf Tournament

    Westfields Golf Club, Clifton, Virginia

Licentiate in Sacred Theology (S.T.L.)

Degree Requirements

The Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception offers an advanced and specialized research degree, the Licentiate in Sacred Theology (S. T. L.). Lectures, seminars, research projects, and personal study are designed to promote theological competency in a particular area of scientific investigation. The Licentiate degree is granted by the authority of and in the name of the Holy See.


The S.T.L. program is open to qualified clerical and lay students.

The following prerequisites for admission will be evaluated by the Committee on Admissions which may, in individual cases, allow the student to remedy particular deficiencies during the first year of the program:

  • The Baccalaureate of Sacred Theology. Holders of a Masters of Divinity or of another, similar first professional degree in theology will have their previous academic record evaluated to determine what further work is required to establish equivalence to the S.T.B. degree, and before beginning the S.T.L. program. In the case of those who hold only a Master of Arts degree in theology, this will typically involve at least one-and-a-half-additional years of full time study of theology before beginning the STL program.
  • Superior achievement and the ability to pursue graduate work as indicated by the transcript of previous studies (with a minimum GPA of 3.25).
  • Three letters of recommendation by persons who are in a position to judge the applicant’s ability in this academic area, along with a current photo and a completed application form.
  • A reading knowledge of Latin and Greek.

Course Work

A minimum of 36 semester hours of credit is required in twelve special courses of theological or allied studies, including courses in Sacred Scripture (3), Historical Theology (3), Systematic Theology (6), the Thomistic Seminar I and II (6), and Teaching and Learning (3) for those who have not taught.

The Faculty requires a comprehensive two-semester Pro-Seminar for the first S.T.L. year. This Seminar ensures that all students who fulfill all of the other requirements for the degree are adequately imbued with the theological understanding of Saint Thomas. The Seminar meets two hours per session twice a week over two semesters, and offers three credits per semester. The Seminar satisfies six elective credits in the S.T.L. program, the Dean granting exemptions on an individual basis.

Language Requirements

Reading proficiency in Latin, New Testament Greek, and a modern foreign language (e.g. French, German or Spanish) is to be demonstrated by written examination or six credits of graduate coursework. Since Latin and Greek are required for the S.T.B. degree, S.T.L. candidates must have satisfied the Pontifical Faculty’s requirements for these languages within the first year of matriculation in the S.T.L. program. The modern foreign language requirement is normally demonstrated within the first year of study as well. Language proficiency exams are offered twice per semester.

Grade Point Average

The student must maintain a grade point average of 3.25 or above through the S.T.L. program.

Lectio Coram

In early March of the Candidate’s second year, he or she must present to the Dean ten theses for the lectio coram. These will be reviewed and corrected by the Faculty. If necessary, they will be returned to the candidate to be redone. Each thesis should contain a bibliography of seven to ten items, generally as current as possible and clearly related to the point of the lectio. This indicates the candidate’s ability to pinpoint the relevant literature for the topic and guide those who will be following (and judging) the lectio. The lectio coram consists of a presentation of forty-five minutes before a board of four examiners followed by a ten minute period of questioning by each examiner. Follow up questions may be permitted after each examiner has completed his or her period of questioning. A minimum average grade of 3.25 is required for successful completion of the lectio coram.

Tesina (Thesis)

This is to show competence in methods of scientific research by completing a tesina under the direction of a member of the faculty on an approved topic relating to the student’s specialization. The tesina must represent a substantial and sustained intellectual endeavor in the student’s chosen area. Following the agreement of a faculty member to direct the tesina and the approval of the Dean, the student submits a tesina proposal. The proposal includes a statement and brief synopsis of the topic, reasons for the choice of the topic, a statement of methodology, a brief outline and preliminary bibliography. The proposal must be signed by the director and the candidate, and is sent to the Faculty for approval by the end of the first year of full-time study.

The tesina should be no less than 75, nor more than 100, pages of text in length. The tesina grade will consist of the average of the grades submitted by the tesina director, and a second reader appointed by the Dean. The tesina grade will be determined by satisfactory completion of the approved tesina proposal, thorough exploration of the state of the question within contemporary research, innovative reflections or approaches to the question, adherence to standards of graduate level scholarship and approved Faculty style regulations. Students who successfully complete a tesina receive three credits, which may be counted as part of the thirty-six required credits for the S.T.L. degree. The candidate is to submit three unbound copies of the tesina to the Dean by 1 April before anticipated graduation. No lectio coram will be scheduled before the completed tesina is submitted. The minimum satisfactory average grade for the tesina is a 3.25.


A Candidate for the S.T.L. should begin to discuss possible areas and topics for the tesina during September of the first year that he or she is enrolled in the program.

A definitive proposal for the tesina must be submitted by April 15 of the first year that the candidate is enrolled in the program. This proposal must be submitted to the Dean in writing, and must be signed by both the Candidate and his or her advisor.

A prospectus of the tesina must be submitted to the Dean by October 15 of the second year that the candidate is enrolled in the program. The prospectus is a formal proposal and outline of the tesina. It should include a concrete description of the tesina, an outline, and a selected bibliography. At this time, the Dean will appoint a second reader.

The completed tesina must be submitted to the Dean by April 1 of the candidate’s second year.

N.B. For students intending to complete their S.T.L. during the fall semester, the deadline for submitting the tesina proposal is April 15. The ten theses for the lectio coram must be submitted to the Dean by October 15, and the S.T.L. tesina must be submitted to the Dean by November 1.


The residency requirement for the S.T.L. degree is four semesters.

Model Curriculum

Year I (Fall Semester)

  • Thomistic Seminar I
  • Sacred Scripture Elective
  • Systematic Theology Elective

Year I (Spring Semester)

  • Thomistic Seminar II
  • Historical Theology Elective
  • Systematic Theology Elective

Year II (Fall Semester)

  • Teaching and Learning: Theory and Practice or Elective
  • Elective
  • Elective

Year II (Spring Semester)

  • Elective
  • Elective
  • Elective

Additional Requirements

  • Latin Reading Comprehension Test (Year I)
  • Greek Reading Comprehension Test (Year I)
  • Modern Language Reading Comprehension Test (Year I)
  • Tesina and Lectio Coram (Year II)

N.B. The course Teaching and Learning: Theory and Practice is required for those who have not previously taught. Otherwise, an elective may be substituted.