Veritatis Splendor Institute

What is the Veritatis Splendor Institute (VSI)

The Veritatis Splendor Institute (VSI) was founded in the Diocese of Rapid City in 2013 under the patronage of St. John Paul the Great. It is within his legacy and luminous Magisterium that we seek to ground the wholistic formation which the Institute imparts: formation that is human, spiritual, academic, and pastoral.

The goal of the Institute is the mission of the Church: “to proclaim the Gospel to all men” (Ad Gentes 1). As all are called to this mission, the VSI strives to form disciples and catechists who engage in the work of evangelization and catechesis.

To this end, the VSI is offering a Catechist Certification Program for all who are interested in sharing in this mission: DREs, youth ministers, catechists, core team members, Catholic school teachers, volunteers, liturgists, musicians, and any pastoral ministers and others who want to grow as evangelists and teachers of the Faith.

The Catechist Certification Program will provide diocesan certification for catechists: a one-year Basic Certification Program, and a two-year Master Certification Program, through instruction in the content of the Faith and formation as disciples of Christ more deeply conformed to his Most Sacred Heart. The program will include doctrinal and liturgical education, instruction in evangelistic and catechetical methodology, formation in the moral life, discipleship, spiritual life and prayer, community life and mission, Catholic worldview, and more.

The program will include courses of study and an annual retreat. We will provide formation advisors to assist in the work of the study and discipleship formation.

Graduate Credits for VS are available through the University of Sioux Falls.

Roger Shull Scholarship

This year, we are excited to announce that one registrant for the Basic Year will be eligible for the Roger Shull Scholarship, to cover the full cost of VSI tuition. Roger was a VSI student from Wall who was passionate about his Catholic faith and died unexpectedly during his Masters I year. Funds donated by his family have enabled students in need to take part in this important diocesan program. We invite you to apply today!

Basic Certification

The Basic Certification course presents an in-depth study of the four pillars of our Faith and an introduction to catechetical methodology. Delving into the fundamental mysteries of the Catholic Faith, liturgical worship and sacraments, principles and values of moral theology, the traditions of prayer and spirituality and the saints, this course will lead to the primary aim and mission of the Church: to draw all people to an intimate encounter with the living God. It will also explore concrete useful methods for evangelization and catechesis, in our families and in our communities, while offering enrichment courses on a variety of practical topics for everyday life and growth in Christ. Additionally, regular prayer, the Holy Mass, a retreat, and formation groups provide a setting and opportunity to grow in that personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

Master Certification

The Master Certification course builds on the foundations of the Basic Certification Course, diving deeper into Scripture and Systematic Theology. Exploring principles of theology, philosophy, reason, Sacred Scripture, the history of the Church, God’s self-revelation and inner life and nature, the nature and mission of Christ, the nature of the Church, the Blessed Virgin Mary, and the end-times. Enrichment courses delve even deeper for practical knowledge and tools for the mission of the Church. Continued Prayer & Spirituality classes, the Holy Mass, meditation, retreats, and formation groups plumb the depths of spirituality, the movements of the heart, and the discernment of spirits, going even further in the understanding and experience of the encounter and deep relationship with our Lord.

Pastoral Ministry Tracks

Pastoral Formation is one of the four indispensable pillars of formation for ministry. This year, we are excited to announce the following pastoral ministry tracks

At the Basic level, these tracks will be focused on small group and relational ministry for catechesis, and liturgical formation.

At the Masters level, the tracks offered this year will be for Youth Ministry and Eucharistic Formation, in light of this being the Diocesan Year of our National Eucharistic Revival. This series of workshops will provide both foundational and advanced topics while helping participants to develop a comprehensive ministry aimed at evangelization and discipleship.

To help expand the reach of these pastoral formation tracks, they will also be open to participation from anyone in the Diocese, on a pre-registration basis. More details on this to come!

VSI 2022-2023 Registration

Registration Open! Registration Deadline August 1, 2022.

2022-2023 Dates

September 9 – orientation evening 6-9pm
September 10 (2nd Sat)
October 1
November 5
December 3
January 7
February 4
March 4
April 1
May 6
June 2 – end of the year sharing of graces
June 3

VSI Retreats

October 21-23, 2022
March 24-26, 2023

Youth Ministry Certification Track

2021-2022 Student Resources

Basic 2021-2022

Masters 2021-2022

2020-2021 Student Resources

Basic 2020-2021

Masters 2020-2021

2021-2022 Dates*

September 11 (2nd Sat)
October 2
November 6
December 4
January 8 (2nd Sat)
February 5
March 5
April 2
May 7
June 4
July 9 (2nd Sat)
August 6
(*subject to change)

Cor ad Cor Small Groups

The Cor ad Cor Spirituality Year is a weekly small group gathering of all men or all women to learn more about the spiritual life, to grow in relationship and conversation with the Lord, and to share faith and the work of the Lord with others.

Essentially, Cor ad Cor is a retreat, which begins with the Oremus program from Ascension Press (8 weeks), and then moves into the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola according to the 19th annotation (additional 22 weeks). Small groups of about six people meet weekly with a trained leader for these 30 weeks.