Arts at STM

Arts at STM

Our Ignatian heritage invites us to explore the intersection between theology and the arts. Seeking God in all things, our engagement with artistic mediums like poetry, music, drama, and literature nourishes our imagination and enlivens our theology.  

By allowing our theological work to engage with a diversity of artistic forms, we learn to see, as the great Jesuit poet Gerard Manley Hopkins puts it, the beauty of a world “charged with the grandeur of God”. As we learn to seek this beauty, we help others seek it, too— through expressions of creativity and wonder in our ministry, our theological work, and even our own artistic projects. Here at STM, students will find a myriad of ways to discover the sustaining power of the arts for theology and ministry in today’s world. 


Engagement with the arts expands our theological sensibilities, coupling intellect and affect in ways that are freeing and formative. The arts serve as powerful spiritual resources, gathering the energy and emotions of the beholder and stimulating desire for meaningful praxis.
Colleen M. Griffith, Professor of the Practice of Theology

Faculty Spotlights

Brian Dunkle, S.J.

Theology and Literature

Colleen M. Griffith

Practical Theology, Spirituality, and the Arts

Benjamin Valentin

Theology and Film

Angela Kim Harkins

Prayer and Ritual in the Biblical World

Callid Keefe-Perry

Theopoetics and Public Theology

In addition to the many resources offered by Boston College, STM students may also take coursework through member schools of the prestigious Boston Theological Interreligious Consortium (BTI).

With the permission of their faculty advisor, STM students may use elective credit to take courses in other Boston College departments, utilizing the university's expertise in areas such as art history, literature, music, studio art, and theater.

Degree Programs

M.A. Theology and Ministry

Students in the M.A. Theology and Ministry program must complete an integrative thesis project that theologically and practically works with a question at the core of a student's ministerial interests. One option for this project allows students to engage their theological and ministerial interests through aesthetic expressions. Students whose artistic/performance abilities are already recognized may use these talents to generate a meaningful and comprehensive response to their thesis questions. An Artistic/Performance thesis may use creative arts (visual, musical, or movement), multi-media, or field-based work to explore a topic of theological and ministerial significance. This project culminates in a public performance or display that includes an educational component.


Book cover: The Girl Who Saved the Stars


The Girl Who Saved the Stars
Andrew Craig '19

For his thesis project, Andrew argued for the spirituality of children’s literature, in both its creation and its use. To convey this, he illustrated and wrote his own children’s book, The Girl Who Saved the Stars. He then shared the process as well as moments when he was able to read the book to groups of children. With inspiration from Pope Francis’s “Laudato Si'” as well as Elizabeth Johnson’s theology, he hoped to share a message of Care for Creation that empowers young voices to speak for what they believe in. 

The Girl Who Saved the Stars was recently published by Barnes & Noble Press.

Additional Academic Programs

Master of Theological Studies

An ideal degree for students wishing to prepare for further studies in theology or for teaching theology, the M.T.S. program enables rigorous and flexible studies, including engagement with the arts.

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Master of Divinity

Rigorous and intensive, the three-year Master of Divinity is a comprehensive professional degree program that combines a broad study of theology with supervised ministry and spiritual formation. Students are invited to creatively appropriate a firm theological grounding toward a rich range of ministries.

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Master of Theology

The Th.M. is an advanced degree that allows students, who already posses a first-level master's degree the opportunity to return to studies and look into specific topics more deeply.

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Schoolwide Events

The STM Dialogues

The STM Dialogues is an annual event which aims to create a brave space that brings to life people's sacred stories of their faith journeys. Submissions should be in narrative prose, poetry or visual art. Each selected written piece will be assigned to one or more performers, in consultation with the author. These performers will share their embodied interpretations of the written pieces at the STM Dialogues. The Dialogues Committee will work with writers and performers to edit for time and content through confidential conversation that honors the author's creative intentions and protects anonymity. All pieces remain anonymous.