Formation Institute for Religion Educators (FIRE)

FIRE is the Graduate Program of the Theology Department of the School of Humanities, Ateneo de Manila University and receives institutional support by Loyola School of Theology.  It offers a scholarship program designed at forming highly qualified and motivated teachers and catechists personally committed to the vocation of educating Filipinos in the Christian Faith.
 
FIRE responds to the pressing need of the Catholic Church in the Philippines and of the nation, for competent teachers in Religious Education at all levels, and for Religion coordinators in schools, parishes, and dioceses. Today’s urgent call is for “education towards authentic Filipino maturity in the faith.”
 
FIRE proposes an integrated formation program including

  • CONTENT: basic Scripture courses as source for courses in essential Catholic doctrine (Creed), morals (Commandments and values), and worship (Sacraments);
  • METHODOLOGY: foundational theory of Religious Education grounded in sound theology, education, psychology, and cultural anthropology—as relevant to the Philippine context;
  • PRACTICE: actual exercise in class teaching, lesson planning, drawing up scope and sequence charts, course syllabi, and religious educational materials for grade school, high school and college levels and in parish and diocesan catechetical programs

CONTENT AND RESOURCES
FIRE courses prioritize the religion educator's solid grounding in the essential content of the faith as expressed in Scripture, Church teachings, and human experience. Critical engagement with contemporary theological, scriptural, and other interpretative approaches is combined with the use of the Catechism for Filipino Catholics and National Catechetical Directory for the Philippines as key sources. FIRE students have access to ADMU's Rizal Library, the Department of Theology's FIRE Library, and the many other learning spaces and opportunities at the Ateneo de Manila University.

METHODOLOGY AND PRACTICE
FIRE emphasizes methods of imparting the Christian faith that are grounded in sound theology, the social sciences, and human experience in the Philippine context. FIRE offers actual exercises in classroom teaching, lesson planning, and syllabus crafting for catechesis and religious instruction at any level for schools, parishes, and diocesan programs.

COMMUNITY AND SPIRITUALITY
Central to FIRE is the unique community created by bringing together religion educators from all over the country. Students, faculty, and alumni of FIRE form a community where a healthy exchange of ideas, stories, and best practices takes place, as well as a deepening of the unique spirituality of a religion educator through community-building activities and the celebration of the sacraments.

ADMISSIONS
Applicants for the FIRE program must:

  • Hold a bachelor’s degree with at least 12 units in Theology or Religious Education,
  • Be currently employed as religion educator or equivalent,
  • Accomplish the admission requirements of the Office of the Associate Dean for Graduate Programs (OADGP),
  • Obtain a satisfactory score in the Graduate School Entrance Test,
  • Undergo a personal interview with the Program Coordinator.

SCHOLARSHIPS
All FIRE students enjoy a full academic scholarship that covers each semester's registration, tuition, and library fees.

CONTACT INFORMATION
  3/F Horacio de la Costa Hall

      Ateneo de Manila University

  (632) 426-6001 loc. 5370 to 5373

 fire@ateneo.edu