New York Catholic Bible School
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The New York Catholic Bible School Program offers the Scriptural foundations of our faith and provides ongoing formation for interested adults in the Archdiocese of New York. The Bible School helps us to deepen our knowledge of and appreciation for Sacred Scripture, enabling us to share the Word of God with those we serve.
No particular educational background is required but the Bible School is designed for the serious student. The New York Catholic Bible School exists because:
- There is joy and hope in the Bible
- Being grounded in belief brings us to a deeper relationship with God
- Intense study brings us to life-changing personal growth in spirituality and service to others
- The whole Church is enriched by lay people equipped to lead others in exploring the Bible
The course of study leads to a Certificate in Basic Scripture Study after two years and a Certificate in Advanced Scripture Study for those who complete the full, four-year course.
Those who have Level 1 and Level 2 Catechist Certificates can use credits from the NY Bible School towards their certificate renewal (which is done every five years).
What our students have to say:
“Our instructor was truly a wonderful, spiritual, knowledgeable and encouraging person. He made the class interesting, enjoyable and had you wanting to know and learn more. I never made time to read the Bible but after taking this course for the last 4 years, it has made me wanting to do so. Thank you for allowing me to take this course so I could understand why I love my religion and keep my faith strong”. Frances Procino (Bible School graduate, 2020)
“Even though for years I’ve studied the Bible, I have found out that the course you offer is far more superior than what I have had in the past. The reason for that is the wonderful instructor I have I find the teachings very relevant to my everyday life, and I found much meaning in the lessons that I am learning with this intensive course of Bible studies. I realize how much more meaningful the course that I am taking is, giving me a deeper insight on the real meaning of the Bible and bringing me to a deeper relationship with God. In a way it is like learning a fantastic story of how important the Bible is to us in our everyday life and how much more meaning we find in our lives after learning the teachings of the Bible. I am very happy with it and I can vouch that it has really changed me in my everyday life and in my outlook in the way that I deal with people in general. I cannot say enough how happy I am taking the course and how satisfied I am with the teachings of the Bible School”. Magda S. Aguilar (Bible School Student)
“I am happy that I took a leap of faith over four years ago and finally decided to enroll in the New York Catholic Bible School program. I was inspired to participate in the program not only because I am a lector who was longing for a deeper understanding and knowledge of the bible, but also because a former co-worker, who is a Protestant, was very knowledgeable about the bible and quoted verses during conversations, and when we prayed together. I learned more about the bible above and beyond what I had initially expected. I would recommend this program to anyone who wants to gain more knowledge about the bible and delve deeper into God’s word. It has been a fulfilling and remarkable experience! My instructor is a wonderful teacher, patient, kind, knowledgeable and sensitive to the needs – personal and professional – of each student. He was always willing to answer questions regarding the bible, church ethics and current events, etc. Thank you to the Archdiocese and everyone involved in the preparation and administration of the bible school program. May God continue to pour his blessings upon you and the program.” Anonymous (Bible School graduate, 2020)
“I decided to register for the New York Catholic Bible School after attending World Youth Day in 2016. Bible Study at my local parish was one of the ways I had deepened my faith but I wanted to know more. The New York Catholic Bible School gave me amazing information and resources that was not only enriching but increased my love for Christ”. Giacinta Vitiello Principe (Bible School graduate, 2020)
“I just started the first trimester of the first year of the New York Catholic Bible School in January 2021 and I’m very pleased with the instructor, content and required books. I had been looking for such a program to study all books of the Bible in an efficient and timely manner and jumped at the opportunity once I learned of this program in early January. I look forwarded to deepening both my understanding of sacred scripture and my personal relationship with God over the four years of this program!” Chris Fields (Bible School student)
“Bible school has been a truly remarkable learning experience. I am in year 2 and our instructor is an outstanding teacher, a scholar and a wonderful person who gives his time generously. This course has changed the way I understand so much of Catholicism and has deepened my faith tremendously. I highly recommend it”. Cynthia Formica (Bible School student)
“When I first saw the New York Catholic Bible School program listed in my parish bulletin, I thought that it was something that I would be interested in but four years seemed like a very long commitment. Thankfully, I didn’t let that stop me from going forward with it. It was a very quick four years and at the end of it I was wishing that it would continue. I came to the program with very little schooling about the Bible, at the end of the program I came away with a wonderful appreciation of the spiritually inspired words. This program is just the beginning of my Bible journey. My teacher was the most wonderful instructor, he was so generous with his knowledge, he always added to the lesson with such interesting asides. He was always professional and always prepared. It was my honor to have him as an instructor. “Virginia Urzi (Bible School graduate, 2020)
“I love it! It’s an excellent class!” Yvette Colon (Bible School student)
“My New York Catholic Bible School program is always dynamic and eye popping as new perspectives and/or revelation is discussed. The instructor, has added yet another layer of understanding and discernment in God’s plan for us. This course has made me realize that I need to listen many more times than speaking since what I thought I understood before is simplistic and in many cases erroneous. For those that are truly interested in knowing more about the faith – NYCBS is it”. Angel Colon (Bible School student)
“I am starting my third year in the Catholic Biblical School Program. For the first two years we met in person , but now we meet once a week on Zoom. Nearly everyone , young and old , chose to continue our bible study in this new way because of the instructor. His encyclopedic knowledge of the Bible, his wit, his enthusiasm, and his commitment are remarkable”. Patricia Lane (Bible School Student)
The New York Catholic Bible School offers two phases of intensive study covering the entire Bible.
Basic Bible Study
Beginning students gain skills for studying and praying with the Bible, and focus on comprehensive study of major books of both Testaments.
- Year One: Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, Genesis, Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings.
- Year Two: Mark, Luke, John, Acts, Pauline Letters, Revelation.
Advanced Bible Study
Those who wish may continue, and cover all other books of the Bible in Years Three and Four.
The New York Catholic Bible School combines academic knowledge with faith sharing to transform minds and hearts. This integrated learning experience involves both the head and the heart.
A variety of methods of instruction appropriate to adult learning are used:
- Students are assigned weekly reading and reflection, including Scripture passages and biblical commentaries. You can expect to spend approximately three to four hours on each weekly assignment.
- Communal prayer begins each session.
- Small groups discuss that week’s reflection questions.
- An enrichment lecture is provided by a professional instructor.
- Trimester quizzes evaluate and consolidate learning.
All instructors have Masters’ degrees in Scripture or a related field.
Michael Borges is no stranger to the New York Catholic Bible School. He has been involved with the program for over 15 years. Mike strongly believes in St. Jerome’s maxim, “Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.” When not teaching Scripture to adults in the program he serves as the chairperson of the Theology Department and co-campus minister at Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx. He is a graduate of Fordham University and St. Joseph Seminary. Mike lives in Congers in Rockland County and attends Holy Cross Parish in the Bronx. While not working or volunteering, Mike loves to go running and participates in local marathons and half-marathons. He and his wife of 25 years, Sonali, are the proud parents of two sons, Elijah and Gabriel, who always do their best to keep them both very busy.
My name is Linda Fitzsimmons, Regional Catechetical Director for Dutchess and Ulster. I feel very privileged to have taught with the NY Catholic Bible School in Dutchess county for 8 years. What I like most about catechesis and teaching the faith to adults is the interconnectedness of Liturgy, Dogma, and Prayer with Sacred Scripture. Much of what we as Catholics believe and the foundations of our liturgy and prayer may be found throughout Sacred Scripture. While I have many varied interests that include a love of silent movies and film noir, I love working with computers and any and all related gadgetry. Consequently, the use of technology as an evangelization tool is something that interests me greatly; whenever possible I like to share that knowledge and enthusiasm with others through the classes I teach.
Rev. Michael Kerrigan is the Pastor of St. John-Visitation Parish, Bronx, NY. He has been a New York Catholic Bible School instructor since 2011. As editor at Paulist Press from 2005-2010, he worked on various bible resources including the workbooks used in this four year course of study. As a NYCBS instructor, Fr. Kerrigan finds that this program allows participants to be on journey like “the disciples on the road to Emmaus” who have their minds opened to make new biblical discoveries and apply the meaning of the Sacred Scriptures to one’s spiritual life. Fr. Kerrigan enjoys travels to various religious sites and shrines and has led pilgrimages to the Holy Land, Fatima, Italy, Greece, Turkey, and Canada.
I am Fr. Elias Mallon, live in Manhattan and work for the Catholic Near East Welfare Association. I have been teaching at the Bible School for three years now. My field has been Near Eastern languages, Old Testament, ecumenical and interreligious dialogue with emphasis on Islam. There are many very good things about being an instructor in the program. It is wonderful to see the rich diversity of the students and their backgrounds and it is very rewarding to see them grow in their understanding of the sacred texts, how those texts fit in the life of the Church and their own personal lives.
Application Fee: $35
Tuition: $150 per trimester. (The payment of each trimester’s tuition is due before the start of classes).
Re-Registration Fee: $35 per year in years 2, 3 and 4, covering the three trimesters of that year.
Tuition is not refundable after classes start. Fees are not refundable except in special circumstances.
Necessary books must be purchased or otherwise obtained by the students.
A graduation fee is due at the close of Year Two [Basic Certification] and Year Four [Advanced Certification].
Ready to Apply?
To apply, please fill out this online form. Before a new class start you will receive a $35 application fee invoice. Classes typically meet on weekday evenings. If you are a Level 1 certified catechist, please fill out the Level 1 Certified Catechist form to the right.
Bible School (General)
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To apply, please fill out this online form. Before a new class start you will receive a $35 application fee invoice. Classes typically meet on weekday evenings. If you are NOT a Level 1 certified catechist, please fill out the General Application Form to the left.
Bible School (Level 1 Certified Catechist)
"*" indicates required fields