Examines the ways Christians have understood the person and work of Jesus. We will explore scripture and tradition to illumine how those who confess Jesus as savior have defined him and to provide means for creative thinking about the central figure of Christian faith
Studies the theological significance of saints in the Roman Catholic tradition. Together we will explore the history of saints and saint-making, paying particular attention to the ways in which changing historical, social, and cultural contexts impact Christian views of holiness. Topics include the origins of the cult of the saints, changing models of sanctity, ritual and devotional practices, the process and politics of canonization, and the implications of the veneration of saints for a theological treatment of God, the church, and the human person.
Introduces the academic study of religion by exploring the various ways individuals and communities articulate their experience of the divine. The course moves from a general consideration of the nature of religious experience to the ways in which this experience takes shape in various sacred scriptures, traditions, theologies, and moral claims.
Offers an introduction to Christology (the study of Jesus) through an exploration of Jesus films. By bringing these films into dialogue with the New Testament, classic Christian doctrines, and the insights of contemporary historians and theologians, students will assess the theological assumptions of these cinematic portrayals (What does the film tell us about Jesus?). Students will also learn to analyze these films in light of the cultural, social, and religious worlds in which they were made (What does the film tell us about those who made it and those who watch it?).
Explores the origin, nature, and mission of the church in light of its evolution from the preaching and mission of Jesus and his disciples, through its developing history, to its current self-understanding since Vatican II.
Focuses on sacramental theology and praxis with particular attention to symbol, liturgical celebration, and pastoral issues that have emerged in the historical and theological development of sacraments in the Christian tradition.
The Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) was one of the most significant religious events of the twentieth century. Its influence is still felt in virtually every area of Catholic life. This course studies the Second Vatican Council as a historical, sociological, and theological event. It explores what happened at Vatican II—paying particular attention to both the causes and the effects of the council in the life of the Roman Catholic Church.
Explores the theological significance of the digital revolution for the Catholic experience of faith, with particular emphasis on communication technologies and their implications for the Roman Catholic Church as a global religious institution. Surveys the historical impact of technological innovation on the church and explores in depth several theological topics currently being rethought in light of technological change.
An introduction to pedagogy for theological educators. Among the topics covered are the nature and goals of theological education, the vocation of the theology teacher, the sociological research relevant to religious education, the developmental needs of adolescents and young adults, diversity in the classroom, and concrete pedagogical strategies. The class will give special attention to exploring practical ways to advance the learning goals of the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ High School Curriculum Framework in a pedagogically effective manner.