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Course Descriptions

The following non-credit courses are included in our Salesian Online Studies program.  Courses are scheduled on the basis of interest and availability of the instructor.  Courses are grouped into four categories.  Historical, Theological, Literary, and Pastoral. **

** These non-credit courses are not currently offered. Sign-up  for our electronic newsletter to receive updates. 

Take a look at the Advent and Lenten non-credit courses being offered.


The Salesian Heritage

Studies the legacy of St. Francis de Sales by comparing him with other saints and doctors of the Church, by considering his inspiration in the founding or patronage of various religious orders, and by examining the influence of his thought at the Second Vatican Council.

(still in development)

The Salesian Spirit

Studies the life and times of both St. Francis de Sales and St. Jane de Chantal, as these are situated in the French school of spirituality in the Church of the Counter-Reformation period, and introduces basic themes in Salesian Spirituality.

(still in development)

Spiritual Friendship

Examines aspects of spiritual friendship through a study of the inspired relationship between St. Francis de Sales and St. Jane de Chantal, with a focus on the life of St. Jane.

(directed by TBA)


The Eucharist:
Sun of AllSpiritual Exercises

Begun in the "year of the Eucharist" (2004-2005) proclaimed by Pope John Paul II, this course examines St. Francis de Sales' preaching and teaching about the most holy sacrament and the celebration of the Mass.

(directed by TBA)

Salesian Christian Humanism

Examines the doctrinal aspects of Salesian thought, particularly Christology and anthropology, as these provide the foundation for, and are practiced in, the love of friendship.

(directed by TBA)

Salesian Civilization of Love

Considers principles of Salesian spirituality, with emphasis on the virtues, as these are conducive to faith formation for teaching and living the "social gospel"

(directed by TBA)

Salesian Scriptures

Examines the manner by which St. Francis de Sales appropriated the teachings of Sacred Scripture and incorporated them in his own preaching and writing, with examples from his sermons and his "Mystical Exposition on the Canticle of Canticles"

(directed by TBA)


Introduction to the Devout Life

Offers a close reading of the devotional classic, along with an examination of its various teachings on the life of holiness lived in the contemporary world.

(directed by TBA)

Treatise on the Love of God

Offers a close reading of selected portions of this mystical classic, along with an examination of its various teachings on union with God. This course is offered in three parts: on books 1-4, 5-8, and 9-12 of the Treatise.

(directed by TBA)

Meditations on the Faith

Offers a close reading of The Catholic Controversies, along with an examination of continuing questions relative to the defense of the faith (apologetics).

(still in development)

Spiritual Conferences

Offers a close reading of the saint's talks to the Sisters of the visitation, along with an examination of their continuing relevance for the various forms of consecrated life in today's Church

(still in development)


Everyday Holiness
through the Spiritual Directory

Examines the "custom book" written by St. Francis de Sales for the Sisters of the Visitation of Holy Mary and adapted subsequently by various groups, discloses the secret to achieving holiness in the Salesian tradition, and offers useful advice for how to put this spirituality into practice in the ordinary events of one's life.

(directed by TBA)

Salesian Pearls of Wisdom

Francis left us marvelous gems of wisdom in his writings and in his conversations. For the next five weeks, we will explore some of his more pithy, succinct, and wise sayings, discerning their profound and practical application, internalizing them, and stringing them together one by one to form a spiritual chain that can anchor our souls as we journey in the midst of the busyness, stress, and turmoil that surround us.

(directed TBA)

Introduction to Salesian Spirituality: Selected Themes I

Novel to St. Francis de Sales was the belief that we are all called to holiness in our ordinary state in life. Some of the helps he offered for doing so are discussed in this course: the universal call to holiness, union with God, recalling the presence of God, living in the present moment, and the Direction of Intention.

(directed by TBA)

The Beatitudes

These eight “blessed ways” of being from Matthew’s famous Sermon on the Mount are discussed from a Salesian perspective. Fr. Murray, director of the Salesian Spirituality Resources, is one of the most travelled retreat speakers in the congregation. Share his wisdom as he gives practical advice, using St. Francis de Sales as the lens, for how to live well the beatitudes in one’s daily life.

(directed by TBA)

Leadership the Salesian Way

Examines principles of interpersonal relations and organizational dynamics, in comparison with contemporary management training programs, so as to develop skills for personal and professional growth

(still in development)

A Salesian Approach to Personal Identity

Considers various insights from Western psychological theory (primarily Erik Erikson) concerning personal development and growth across the life-span, and integrates these with the wisdom of a Salesian understanding of the human person as graced, gifted, and God-like, toward the goal of helping students interpret their current life situation.

(directed by TBA)

SalesianSpiritual Direction

Examines the Christian call to a life of perfection and the exercise of discernment, particularly as these are reflected in the saints' letters of spiritual direction to both religious and laity.

(directed by TBA)



Events Calendar

Heritage Week - Mass for St. Francis de Sales

Sunday, January 21, 2018, 08:00 PM
DeSales University 2755 Station Avenue, Center Valley, PA
Connelly Chapel

Heritage Week 2018 kicks off with this special mass celebrating the first Bishop of Geneva, Francis de Sales. Our special guest celebrant will be THE MOST REVEREND ALFRED SCHLERT, D.D., J.C.L., Bishop of the Diocese of Allentown

This event is FREE and open to the public. NO tickets are required.

Salesian Spirituality