Tier II Theological Formation Program

The Church has always required proper preparation of those who exercise a ministry…Lay ecclesial ministers, just like the ordained, need and deserve formation of high standards, effective methods and comprehensive goals”.   –Co-workers in the Vineyard of the Lord

The Tier II Theological Formation Program (TFP) offers basic theology and spiritual development to Catholic adults who want to deepen their commitment to Jesus and more fully answer their baptismal call to service as missionary disciples. As a core program offered by the Diocese of Las Cruces, the Theological Formation Program provides authentic Catholic teachings taught by approved instructors with Masters or Doctoral degrees in theological disciplines.  The Theological Formation Program is open to all who have completed the Tier I Introductory Theology Program (ITP) and is strongly recommended for those involved in the following ministries: parish religious education, Catholic schools, youth ministry, RCIA, adult formation, sacramental preparation for children and/or adults, and other formation ministries in the parish or school.


The Theological Formation Program is offered completely online through the Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation (VLCFF), an Internet distance-learning program to support catechist and adult faith formation in the Church.  The VLCFF is sponsored by the Institute for Pastoral Initiatives (IPI) of the University of Dayton – a Catholic Marianist Institution. Their mission is to mobilize the resources of the University of Dayton for partnerships with the Church that create and implement innovative pastoral initiatives designed to meet the needs of the Church and to articulate faith within the context of contemporary culture.  The Diocese of Las Cruces is a partnering diocese with the VLCFF.

The VLCFF offers nearly 100 courses in English and a growing list of courses in Spanish, the following 10 courses are required for completion of the Tier II Theological Formation Program:

  1. Theological Reflections: Key to Connecting Faith & Life (3 weeks)
  2. Introduction to Scripture (5 weeks)
  3. Christology (5 weeks)
  4. Ecclesiology, Beginnings of the Church (5 weeks)
  5. Foundations for Liturgy (5 weeks)
  6. Sacraments (5 weeks)
  7. Conscience (5 weeks)
  8. Survey of Catholic Social Teaching (5 weeks)
  9. Vocation to Ministry  (5 weeks)
  10. Choose 1:
    1. Opt 1: Administration in Ministry (5 weeks)
    2. Opt 2: Leadership in Ministry (5 weeks)

Visit the VLCFF Website for a full course catalog at vlcff.udayton.edu

The courses are 100% online and asynchronous, meaning that you can attend class anywhere in the world and at any time.  The courses are $50.00 per course, which is a special rate available only to partnering dioceses. 

If you are interested in the Tier II Theological Formation Program, would like to register,  have questions, or would like more information, please complete the form below:


By submitting your information, you will receive instructions on how to register and you will be added to our mailing list to stay up-to-date with course offerings.  If you would like more information, you may expect a response within 24-48 hours.


Tier I Introductory Theology Program   Tier II Theological Formation Program   Deacon Formation



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