Parish Business Administration

Parish managers discuss the business of the day

Certificate in Parish Business Administration

This year-long program is designed for professionals, aspiring professionals, or volunteers with responsibility for the financial and temporal affairs of a parish. Classes will meet online beginning September 9, 2023. Details are below under General Information.

As the Church’s ministry grows in scope, reach, and complexity, each parish faces the challenge of administering its resources effectively and fairly, while at the same time achieving compliance with both civil and canon law. Increasingly, parishes look to lay professionals trained in administration to ensure that pastoral ministry can take place in such a way that both enhances and safeguards the mission of the church. These parish business managers provide leadership and day-to-day supervision of the financial and temporal affairs of the parish in such a way as to enable the pastor to concentrate as much as possible on the spiritual affairs of the parish.

The Parish Business Administration professional certificate program offers specialized training for those engaged or aspiring to engage in this pastoral service. It is designed to provide students with practical knowledge and foundational theories of parish administration, organizational awareness, legal and ethical considerations. (Arch)diocesan policies are given careful exploration throughout the course, and every effort is made to assist students not from the (arch)diocese in which the course is taught to become familiar with the policies of their own diocese.

Who Should Participate

This program is open to those already employed in parish administration, those seeking a career in parish administration, or those who are looking to expand their knowledge so as to better serve as a volunteer, council member or other leadership role in a parish or similar setting.

Program Benefits

This program properly prepares students to fulfill the role of Parish Business Administrator. Diocesan policies are given careful exploration throughout the program and guest speakers will come from (arch)diocesan offices and other institutions to facilitate these discussions.

Students will be exposed to the role of the Parish Business Manager, employee benefits and Benefits Administration, collaborative ministry and building consensus, the role of Finance Councils and Pastoral Councils, budget preparation and management, issues in Human Resource Management, compensation theory and salary surveys, pastoral planning, plant maintenance, building projects, fundraising and development, technology, lay ministry and multicultural experience in the Church, Ecclesiology and Canon Law.

Those who successfully complete the program will be able to understand and value:

  • The functions of parish business administration, as well as the relationships of business administration to the various ministerial functions and constituencies of a parish
  • The role of parish business administration in protecting the church from liabilities in a number of areas, including finances, personnel, contracts, real estate, public relations, internet communications, and others
  • The role of (arch)diocesan offices in the administration of the archdiocese and its parishes
  • The parish business administration as a ministry of service

Credit from this program may be applicable to some level of professional certification at the discretion of the certifying diocese. Please be sure to check with the appropriate diocesan office to confirm that this program qualifies.

General Information

Course and program requirements, schedules and tuition are subject to change; and additional fees may be incurred for books and materials. Click here to review all policies prior to enrollment. For additional information, contact the Center at (310) 338-2799 or

Please note: because this is a fully online program, enrollment eligibility is dependent on place of residency. Please review these provisions in full before enrolling.

  • Begins: September 9, 2023

    Enroll: Registration is open online here or call 310-338-2799.

    Course: PADX 900

    Tuition: $1,995

  • Course meets on selected Saturdays online via Zoom, 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM Pacific time:

    • Sept 9 and 23
    • Oct 7 and 21
    • Nov 4 and 18
    • Dec 9 and 16
    • Jan 6 and 20, 2024
    • Feb 3 and 24
    • March 9
    • April 6 and 20
    • May 4

    Additional lessons will be conducted asynchronous between live meetings.

    Connecting Online

    MyLMU is the primary Internet-based portal for students, faculty and staff at Loyola Marymount University. Once you log in to the portal with your credentials, you can directly and securely access the various online learning platforms, including Brightspace and Zoom, and your student record. Click here to begin.

  • Instructors


    • TBA
  • Students must complete a total of 12.0 semester hours in coursework with a letter grade of 'B-' or higher in each course to receive a certificate of completion. Please refer to the course catalog for required text, class meeting location, and other general information.

    Coursework: PADX 900

  • PADX 900
    Parish Business Administration
    12.0 Semester Hours

    Increasingly, parishes look to lay professionals trained in administration to ensure that pastoral ministry can take place in such a way that both enhances and safeguards the missions of the church. This course will examine the practical and foundational theories of parish administration, including financial management, human resources, development, civic and canon law, ecclesiology and pastoral ministry. This course will also emphasize organizational awareness, legal and ethical considerations. Special attention will be given to the administration policies and practices of the local Diocese for case study purposes.