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JST Renewal Program: A Sabbatical Experience

Three students smiling and sitting by a flower bush

We invite ordained, vowed religious, and non-ordained (lay) ministers, who are depleted or in-transition, and other faith-based care providers, change-makers, teachers, and leaders seeking theological updating and spiritual renewal to join us for our Renewal Program. The Renewal Program provides a holistic, sabbatical experience of contemplative rest, theological renewal, and spiritual transformation, available in-person or online for one or two semesters. Sabbatical participants at JST join a dynamic community rooted in the Ignatian tradition that is committed to academic excellence in the vibrant location of Berkeley, California.

Program Dates

Fall: Mid-August – Mid-December

Spring: Mid-January – Mid-May

Program Costs

Basic program cost: $7,000/semester

Non-degree unit cost: $838/unit

Need- and merit-based scholarships available after completing the application.

Application Deadlines

 Fall startSpring start
International students (in-person) May 15 September 15
Domestic and online students July 15 December 1

Look over the Renewal Program application checklist to collect your materials.

Apply here

Our program includes:

  • A curated, holistic sabbatical experience of weekly workshops, community-building, and opportunities for prayer, especially designed for renewal in mind, body, and spirit.
  • Up to six units of one-to-three unit graduate theology courses, for audit or for credit, for professional and ministerial development and theological updating.
  • An opening and closing retreat. 
  • Ongoing spiritual direction with one of our vetted directors (every two to three weeks, throughout the semester).
  • Access to a treasure trove of resources through the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) and Santa Clara University (SCU) libraries.
  • Welcome and participation in the larger JST-SCU and GTU community offerings.
  • Additional resources (e.g., for Wellness, Ignatian Spirituality, etc.)

Renewal students at the closing liturgy

Renewal Course

For those who do not have the resources for a full sabbatical experience, we also offer the following option:

An audit-only, asynchronous course for renewal in mind, body, and spirit, with opportunities for real-time and in-person interaction

This asynchronous, curated, holistic sabbatical experience offers weekly workshops, with opportunities for discussion, community-building, reflection and prayer, for ordained, vowed religious, and non-ordained ministers, who are depleted or in transition, and other faith-based care providers, change-makers, educators, and leaders seeking personal and professional development, theological updating, and spiritual renewal. This course can be taken for one or or two semesters. The one-unit option includes five sessions and the three-unit option is for a semester-long experience that includes a closing self-paced retreat. 

Fall: “New Wine, New Wineskins: Sabbath and Sabbatical” 

Spring: “Global Church/Planetary People”

Contact Carrie Rehak at for session dates. To apply for the course, you do not need to apply for the Renewal program.

Watch this 3-minute video testimonial of a recent online Renewal Program participant.

Get a glimpse inside the online Renewal Program and Course.

Apply Now!
Carrie Rehak

Carrie Rehak

Director of the JST Renewal Program
Phone: (510) 549-5046
Office: Room 104