Program Details

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Foundational Motif: Pastoral Worker as Witness of Jesus’ Mission

Links to the EAPI Vision and Mission

  • Renewal and updating in a multicultural community allow persons to begin with experiences.
  • The new way of being Church is a lifelong journey that includes getting new information and ongoing formation so that transformation can take place.
  • The context informs us on the outcomes and impact of how persons can be witnesses to the mission of Jesus.

Conceptual Principles

  • There is still a need for ongoing integral formation for renewal of the laity, religious and especially clergy.
  • In the Church, the updating of missiology and ecclesiology is crucial if there is to be a new evangelization in Asia Pacific.
  • The doing of pastoral theology in a multicultural global context requires new knowledge from social science, special skills training, and focused capacity building


The Second Vatican Council set in motion a spirit of ongoing renewal in the Church, a spirit of both ressourcement and aggiornamento. Deeply rooted in the sources of Christian faith and discerning the action of God’s Spirit in events and movements in the modern world, it opened the Church to winds of change that spoke of “the joy and hope, the grief and anguish of the people of our time, especially of those who are poor or afflicted in any way.” (GS 1) As a result, the Church now understands itself as a dynamic, living organism in continuous development through dialogue with all its members in a variety of participatory processes.

The East Asian Pastoral Institute was the first institution in Asia which captured the spirit of the Council and committed itself to make Vatican II happen in the churches of Asia. Faithful to its original inspiration and purpose, the Institute commits itself to the ongoing renewal of the local churches of (South and East) Asia and the Pacific in the spirit of Vatican II by providing programs of spiritual formation, theological updating, and training in pastoral skills.

Course Description

The renewal programs of the East Asian Pastoral Institute are grounded in the Jesuit tradition of educating and engaging the whole person. Hence, they take into consideration – in a balanced way – several important elements:

  • the personal needs of the participants, fostering growth through self-reflection, and the deepening of motivations (interiority; spirituality)
  • interaction and community building between participants
  • the promotion of critical thinking, cultural sensitivity and religious openness
  • the mobilization of cultural and spiritual resources for mission


Content and Approach

The content and approach of the programs are geared towards a deeper understanding of salient Vatican II documents and towards creative ways of enfleshing their spirit in the local churches to which the participants and students belong. Thanks to the beacons set out by the FABC and the FBCO, the local churches are awakening to their cultural and spiritual identity. They have moved towards becoming truly global and truly local in community, worship, ministry and witness.

These developments make possible integral evangelization through dialogue, collaboration, participation and lay empowerment. These developments have also helped the churches to be aware of the complex realities they face and to assume their mission in a triple dialogue: with people of different cultures, with followers of different faith traditions, and with the poor who suffer the effects of injustice, exclusion and the destruction of the environment.

EAPI wants to help the participants to answer the questions: What do we, Asian-Pacific Christians want/have/dare to say to the peoples of Asia and Oceania? What is so unique and new about Jesus Christ that responds to the deepest aspirations of our peoples? What is the best way to make that clear in an imaginative, creative, credible and courageous way?

The 4-month program is divided into 4 clusters. Each cluster focuses on a particular pastoral issue and provides contemporary perspectives and skills that will enable the participant to attain the three goals.


  1. To train "ministers" for a better service to their local churches and to discover the "frontiers" that determine the context (the local or "pastoral" dimension);
  2. To help participants from different countries and local churches to listen to and learn from each other at a deeper level than that of cultural nights or colorful offertory processions (they are first steps), and to foster a common concern for the churches of Asia/Oceania and their mission to these continents (the "missionary" dimension);
  3. To foster a worldwide (catholic, universal) outlook (the “global missionary" dimension).



In teaching the modules at EAPI, the lecturers are requested to engage in pedagogy that:

  1. Explain the concepts used in the modules using simple English and everyday examples;
  2. Share personal experiences to illustrate the points in the lectures. Authenticity of the lecturer is much appreciated by the participants since the “grammar of life is one and the same with that of the heart”;
  3. Interact with the participants on the basis of mutual enrichment and critique as equal partners in the process of accompaniment and multicultural learning;
  4. Use creative methods to enhance learning such as power-point presentation, story-telling, role-play, video clips, group discussion, reading the paper and explaining certain points in detail, case study, praying on the passage, creative reporting, dramatization …etc.
  5. Pay attention to the expectation of A.S.K, orienting the lectures toward a change of Attitudes, acquisition of Skills and Knowledge. It is important to relate the lectures to their different pastoral situations and future ministries.
  6. Make reference to the Vatican II, FABC, CST, CCC, papal and curial documents as far as possible in their presentation.
  7. Always explore the relation of the knowledge imparted in relation to the skills that the participants desire to acquire for their future pastoral ministries.



Each cluster will normally be completed in four weeks. They are sequential or can stand alone, meaning that persons might decide to attend one cluster or one or two modules of a cluster, which is titled “open module”.

      1. Ongoing formation for Integral Human and Spiritual Transformation

  • This cluster aims to provide the participants to critically reflect on the spiritual, physical, psychological, sexual, social aspects of their lives so that they develop healthy self-awareness. This will hopefully initiate positive change and renewal.

      2. Pastoral Renewal for Mission and New Frontiers

  • This cluster aims to assist participants in the “refueling” and “checking up” for new insights and frontiers that determine the context for pastoral and missionary work.

      3. Updating of ecclesiology for Shepherd Leadership

  • This cluster aims to train participants to become leaders, advocates and pro-active catalyst for a more effective 21st c. Church in their regions.

      4. Doing Pastoral theology in a Multicultural Global Context

  • This cluster aims to help participants from different countries and local churches to listen to and learn from each other at a deeper level than that of culture, in order to foster a worldwide (catholic, universal) outlook. This will be done by learning new pastoral and missionary skills.


Sample of Modular Topics

The topics chosen for a particular year will be influenced by the changes that are happening in the Universal Church, in the Conferences of Bishops and the Society of Jesus.

      1. Ongoing formation for Integral Human and Spiritual Transformation

  • Narratives  About and For Conversion
  • Managing Loneliness and Human Intimacy as ordained/vowed wo/men.
  • The Person of the Pastoral Agent: A Journey to Personal Wholeness and Well-being
  • Managing Stress, Burnout and other Related Conditions
  • Spiritual Direction for growth in relationship with God
  • Self-disclosure for Effective Ministry
  • Management of Emotions in the Apostolates
  • Sexuality and Spirituality: Two Pastoral Tensions
  • Spirituality on Midlife and Aging


      2. Pastoral Renewal for Mission and New Frontiers

  • Mission and Pastoral: A Necessary Distinction
  • Mission: Following the Way of Jesus
  • Mission as Dialogue with Popular Cultures & Religions
  • New Evangelization and Cultural Identity
  • Globalization and the Mission
  • Evangelii Gaudium: A Guide for Missionary Church   


      3. Updating of Ecclesiology for Shepherd Leadership

  • Vatican 11: The Spirit of Ressourcement and Aggiornamento
  • Revisiting the FABC documents on the Church in Asia
  • Contextual Theology Redefined
  • Understanding and Creating  a “Shepherd oriented Church”
  • The Laity and Youth: Future of the Church
  • A Creative Tension: The Universal and Local Church
  • Plurality and the New Way of Being Church
  • Leadership in a Shepherd Church  


      4. Doing Pastoral theology in a Multicultural Global Context

  • Pastoral Theology : An Ongoing Conversation
  • Homiletics and Lecture Preparation
  • Adapting the Catechism of the Catholic Church to the Context and Culture
  • Communication Skills for Inter-Religious Dialogue
  • Designing a Renewal Program for the Parish
  • Practicing the Pastoral Spiral or Cycle
  • Participating and Planning Recollections and Retreat
  • Becoming a spiritual companion in a multicultural setting.
  • Reading Church documents for updating

Possibilities for the Pastoral Renewal for Discipleship

The program may be taken as whole as a partial requirement for the Professional Diploma in Pastoral Studies. It will serve as the residential requirement for the MA in Pastoral Studies. The clusters may be taken as one program but participants may attend one cluster or wish to attend only one or two modules.


For fees, please contact the Secretariat office: or

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