Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program

In many of our sponsoring dioceses, half or more of the Catholics are Hispanic. Throughout the United States the number of Latino Catholics continues to grow, resulting in changing needs of the Church. Therefore, Sacred Heart offers a program in Hispanic ministry preparation which has been designed to prepare seminarians and other students for effective ministry in the diverse Hispanic cultures present in the U.S. Church today.


The Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program for seminarians reaches across the pillars of spiritual formation, human formation, intellectual formation, and pastoral formation.


Seminarians in the Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program will receive a course plan based on the expectations of the sponsor. Course plans may be modified as needed during the student’s time at Sacred Heart. Seminarians may also initiate enrollment into the program with the sponsor’s consent. Please contact the Director of the Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program, Fr. José González, at jgonzalez@shsst.edu with any questions.


The Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program is also open to non-seminarians.



Each seminarian enrolling in the Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program will be given one of three options depending upon the wishes of his sponsor, previous applicable course work, and the length of time the student will be at Sacred Heart. The vice president of intellectual formation and the director of the Hispanic Ministry Preparation Program must approve the selected option. Each successive option builds on the previous option. For example, option 3 includes all the requirements for options 1 and 2.

Option I: Introduction to Hispanic Ministry

1. PS 571: Hispanic Presence: Challenge/Commitment (Foundation)

  • Offered every fall semester, it is recommended as the first course for Hispanic Ministry Preparation but it can be taken any year.

2. PS 572: Hispanic Devotional Practices


Option II: Fundamentals for Hispanic Ministry

1. Pastoral Spanish Language Courses (LSP 570, 575, 580, 585)

2. Summer Language/Pastoral-Cultural Immersion

  • Enrollment in options two and three presumes that the seminarian will use Spanish in future ministry as a presider, homilist, and/or pastoral agent. Sacred Heart offers four semesters of Spanish language designed to instill functional Spanish proficiency for Hispanic ministry. Seminarians enroll in the appropriate level depending on prior Spanish language study. In addition, seminarians are encouraged to enroll in an intensive summer language program outside the United States. The specific program is chosen in consultation with the sponsor.

3. Pastoral Field Placement in Hispanic Community

  • The seminary requires eight credits of field education experience plus one basic unit of clinical pastoral education (six credits). Arrangements can be made to have all or part of the experience in Hispanic settings both in the Milwaukee area or the home dioceses. For seminarians unable to participate in an international language/pastoral-cultural immersion, there is an option for a domestic immersion experience. The student is assigned to a Spanish-speaking ministry within his diocese or province, to include 20 hours of ministry per week with a local language tutor, under the supervision of an approved mentor. This option could also receive credit.

Option III: Hispanic Ministry Preparation

1. LS 571: Presiding/Preaching in the Hispanic Community

  • Students enrolled in this component are given the opportunity to acquire basic preaching and presiding skills for the celebration of the sacraments and other liturgical prayer experiences

Pastoral Spanish Language Program

The Pastoral Spanish Language Program focuses on developing functional proficiency for pastoral ministry in Hispanic communities.  To that end, the methodology of teaching Spanish concentrates on developing listening and speaking skills contextually by resequencing verb tenses and moods to enable students to begin conversing in the present context within the initial phase of the program.  Pastoral projects challenge students to focus on applying grammatical structures and vocabulary in actual situations.

Intercultural Preparation for Ministry Booklet