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“I came to St. Charles seeking knowledge, what I found was transformation.”

“I came to St. Charles seeking knowledge, what I found was transformation.”


MA, Theology

“I came to St. Charles seeking knowledge, what I found was transformation.”

For Leslie Kelso, a student in the School of Theological Studies at Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary, learning about her faith turned out to be much more than an intellectual pursuit.

Her road to St. Charles began as an invitation from a friend for Scripture study at a non-denominational church. After an unmistakable nudge from the Holy Spirit, Leslie accepted the invitation. Despite years of Catholic school, faithful Mass attendance and ministry participation, she quickly realized how little she knew about her Catholic faith and the Bible. Even more alarming was the realization that she was lacking a relationship with Christ. It was a profound and humbling experience which ignited a mission to remedy the situation.

Her road to the Master’s program at St. Charles was a winding one to say the least. Pursuing a degree was far from a desire or objective. Yet once again a divine nudge let her know that this is where she was meant to be. This “yes” would be a major turning point in her spiritual journey.

“I came to St. Charles seeking knowledge, what I found was transformation. I believe it is impossible to be immersed in this program and not experience significant interior movement within heart and mind.”

Her studies not only launched an appreciation for the beauty, depth and richness of the Catholic faith, but fostered a deeper understanding of and relationship with Christ. “Knowledge serves love by bringing truth to light and because each new truth learned about God is a new reason for loving Him.”

Her studies gave Leslie the confidence to lead weekly Scripture reflection groups and work on educational and evangelization programs benefiting Catholics in her parish and throughout the Diocese. These types of activities prior to her studies at St. Charles would have seemed out of reach.

“My goal is to combine my years of business experience with my formation at St. Charles to develop targeted programs that reach, teach and inspire Catholics who are sleep-walking in their faith. After all, who better understands a drowsy Catholic than one who has been awakened from a spiritual slumber?”

St. Charles Borromeo Seminary continues to be a world-class institution of higher learning.

Did You Know...

  • Since its beginning in 1969, the School of Theological Studies has awarded 1,085 Master of Arts in Theology degrees to lay men and women, priests, and religious, as well as hundreds of undergraduate certificates.
  • The School of Theological Studies is one of the largest programs of its kind in the United States with more than 300 students enrolled in its various programs.
  • Saint Teresa of Calcutta, recently canonized by Pope Francis, and Mother Angelica, the founder of EWTN, both received honorary degrees from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary for their service and devotion to the Church.
  • The Catechetical Institute prepares highly trained elementary school and PREP teachers to educate the youth of our faith community, and the Church Ministry Institute prepares students for lay ministry leadership positions in their parishes and dioceses.