John Littleton
Director; Course Leader, MA in Biblical Studies and Aquinas Studies

John Littleton

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+353 1 4048128

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John Littleton, a priest of the Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly, has worked at the Priory Institute since 2002, initially as Head of Distance Education and, since 2011, Director. Previously, he taught theology, religious studies, liturgical studies and adult religious education in various seminaries, colleges, institutes and dioceses in Ireland and the UK.

John has graduate and post graduate academic awards in science, theology, religious education, systemic family therapy studies and human resource management from the National University of Ireland, the Pontifical University at St Patrick’s College, Maynooth, the University of Limerick and the Dublin Business School, and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (UK). He also has professional qualifications in training and development, management and human resource management, and is a trained counsellor.

In addition to his academic work, John has worked in several parishes and other pastoral settings. He is a well-known preacher and retreat director. He provides in-service courses for priests and is frequently a guest contributor on religious topics to local and national radio programmes and to national television programmes.

John served for two terms (2001-2007) as President of the National Conference of Priests of Ireland.



·         Fundamental theology, ecclesiology, sacramental theology

·         Contextual theology, particularly Latin American liberation theology

·         Liturgical theology and liturgical practice

·         Distance learning theories and methodologies

·         Stress management


·         The theology of preaching

·         Catholic identity and contemporary Irish Catholicism

·         The application of management theories and methods to Church organisations

·         Appraisal in ministry



A Distance Learning Approach to Theology, Dublin: The Priory Institute, 2002, revised edition 2007.

Journeying Through the Year of Luke: Reflections on the Gospel, Dublin: Veritas Publications, 2009.

Journeying Through the Year of Matthew: Reflections on the Gospel, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2010.

The Fulfillment of God’s Saving Promise: Reflections on the First Readings of Cycle C, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2012.

Encountering God and Discovering Our True Identity: Reflections on the First Readings of Cycle A, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2013.


Edited books:

Irish and Catholic? Towards an Understanding of Identity, co-edited with Louise Fuller and Eamon Maher, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2006.

Contemporary Catholicism in Ireland: A Critical Appraisal, co-edited with Eamon Maher, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2008.

What Being Catholic Means to Me, co-edited with Eamon Maher, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2009.

The Dublin/Murphy Report: A Watershed for Irish Catholicism, co-edited with Eamon Maher, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2010.

Catholicism and Me, co-edited with Eamon Maher, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2012.

The Francis Factor: A New Departure, co-edited with Eamon Maher, Dublin: The Columba Press, 2014.



Articles in Be Brothers, Bleisce, Carmelite Horizons, Catholic Life, Doctrine and Life, Emmanuel, Foundations, Grace and Truth, Intercom, Luceat, NCPI News Bulletin, New Hibernia Review, Reality, Religious Life Review, Scripture in Church, Spirituality, The Catholic Times, The Furrow, The Irish Catholic, The Irish Times and The Living Word


Homilies, sermons and liturgical notes:

Homilies, sermons and liturgical notes in Intercom and The Furrow


Book reviews:

Book reviews in Doctrine and Life, Irish Theological Quarterly, Religious Life Review, Spirituality, The Australasian Catholic Record and The Furrow

Weekly column in The Catholic Times, 2001 to 2015


Latest News
John Littleton

Book launch: Son of an Unknown Father, A Story about Martin de Porres by Maeve McMahon, OP

  Nov 23, 2023
Son of an Unknown Father is a story about Martin de Porres. It opens a window on the culture of the New World in the sixteenth century Read more.

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