The institute provides opportunities for
life-long learning in the fullness of Catholic faith,
fostering ongoing transformation in Christ,
and equipping the people of God for service.

About the Institute

The institute provides the faithful of the Diocese of Venice (and wider region) with opportunities for life-long learning in the fullness of Catholic faith fostering ongoing transformation in Christ, that all might be fully equipped to serve. We offer online and onsite courses for spiritual enrichment, for growing in knowledge and practice of the faith and for training in service — from basic certification, to ongoing professional development to advanced theological education.

The Institute was founded in September 1995 by Bishop Emeritus John J. Nevins as the Blessed Edmund Rice school to prepare lay men and women for service in the Church through a program of formal theological education and spiritual enrichment.  In 2014, the school was renamed The Institute for Catholic Studies and Formation. At that time, a partnership was formed with Franciscan University of Steubenville to offer Catechetical Certification and Master’s courses. In 2020, Dr. John Gresham assumed leadership of the Institute.


Dr. John Gresham brings over 20 years experience teaching Catholic theology to laity, seminarians, deacons, and others at such places as Franciscan University of Steubenville, Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in St. Louis (where he served as Academic Dean) and Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit (where he served as Director of Online Learning). 

News from the Institute

Check out blog posts below for upcoming classes and other announcements.

Empowering Parents as Teachers of Faith: A 3-Week Online Course

This course is for parents especially those with children in a Catholic School or parish religious education program. Parents, we want to help you understand your role as […]

Updated Course: Encountering St. Joseph with St. John Paul II and Pope Francis

In this Year of St. Joseph, take the opportunity to learn more about this great saint. This is a self-paced study of two key papal documents: John […]

Start your MA with Prerequisite Course: What is Catholic Theology? (Ecclesial Nature and Mission of Theology)

Who is this class for? For those who want to pursue an online MA in Theology and Christian Ministry at Franciscan University of Steubenville, this is a […]