Pastoral Thanatology

Tyndale Seminary Pastoral Thanatology


Thanatology is the study of grief, bereavement, death and dying. This growing discipline explores the grieving process, ethical issues surrounding death and dying, cultural, gender and societal attitudes towards death, the issues facing both the dying and the bereaved, and the place of ritual and memorialization.

Many Thanatology students find that ministering to others through grief or loss is rewarding, benefiting the recipient through a difficult period in their life. The program will equip students with the knowledge and skills for assisting those facing or coping with grief and death from the perspective of both the dying and the bereaved. The course will also direct students toward biblical and spiritual resources in grief and bereavement.

This Program Benefits:

  • Pastors
  • Counsellors
  • Spiritual directors
  • Chaplains
  • Hospice and palliative care workers
  • Lay pastoral caregivers

Interesting Courses:

  • Spiritual Care of the Dying and Grieving
  • Cultural and Gender Dynamics in Grief, Death and Dying
  • Disenfranchised Grief
  • Biblical and Spiritual Resources for End of Life Care Certification


Tyndale’s graduates in Pastoral Thanatology will be eligible to be certified by the Canadian Council of Professional Certification (Global) as a Certified Thanatologist Pastoral Specialist (CTPS). This certification requires a minimum of a Master’s degree with bible, theology and a minimum of six courses in thanatology plus an internship of 260 hrs.

Degree & Diploma Options

Doctor of Ministry

Number of courses: 12
Duration: 3 Years

Master of Divinity

Number of courses: 27
Duration: 3 Years

Post-DMin Certificate

Number of courses: 3
Duration: 3 Years

Post-Graduate Diploma

Number of courses: 8
Duration: 1.5 - 2 Years

Concentration in Pastoral Thanatology

MTS and Graduate Diploma students may use their elective courses to complete a four-course concentration in Pastoral Thanatology.

Learn more about Concentrations

Internship Requirements

An internship is required to successfully complete an MDiv in Pastoral Thanatology.
View Internship Information