Introduction To Catholic Christianity
This course is a basic review of Catholic Christian faith. The course demonstrates how religion in general responds directly to human experience, and how Christian faith specifically has grown out of God’s continuing loving action in history. Key concepts and vocabulary are clarified. The course takes the student (believer) as the starting point, works through the reality of religious experience and concentrates on the reality of Jesus Christ as focal to Christian belief. Text: The Light of Faith by Janie Gustafson, Harcourt Religion Publishers, 2005.
This course is based on the covenant God makes with each person beginning with the covenant of the Old Testament/Hebrew Scriptures. Major biblical figures are studied with emphasis on their call from and response to God. The history of the Israelites as a people struggling to know God is reviewed. Connections are made to the fulfillment of the covenant in the Christian Scriptures. Through this study, the student is given the opportunity to identify their own faith struggles and to see God working in their own lives. Text: Journey Through the Old Testament, Harcourt Religion Publishers, 2006.
Jesus in the New Testament
This course includes an introduction to all the books of the New Testament with special emphasis on the gospels and their development as the principal witness of the life and teachings of Jesus. Central to the study are the infancy narratives, the miracles and parables of Jesus’ public life, and the accounts of his passion, death, and resurrection. Interfaced considerations are relevant teachings on Jesus from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the meaning of discipleship, and how Jesus is met in today’s world. An emphasis on prayer and meditation on the meaning of the scripture encourages students to come to know the Jesus of faith as personal in their lives. Text: Encountering Jesus in the New Testament by Michael Pennock, Ave Maria Press, 2009
This course involves an in-depth consideration of the personal development of the individual, centering on Jesus Christ as the model of all humanness, informing a healthy conscience and a right response to moral issues in our world today. Topics covered include Natural Law, the Decalogue, The Beatitudes of Jesus, conscience, Scripture and Tradition, social sin, and forgiveness. The Theological and Cardinal Virtues are presented as character strengths in all facets of moral decision making. Our Eucharistic Church is the source and strength for living a moral life. Text: Morality: An Invitation to Christian Living by Joseph Stoutzenberger, Harcourt Publisher, 2005.
History of the Catholic Church
This course is a historical study of the Christian/Catholic Church from its beginning to its present day form. It provides a perspective on how the Church has grown and developed through the years, and shows how Christians have been challenged to live the gospel over the centuries. It is intended to help students understand the history of their Church so that they may be better able to identify with it. Special focus is on important historical figures in the Church who have in a special way lived the message of Jesus. Text: The Catholic Church: Journey, Wisdom and Mission by Rev. Carl Koch, St. Mary Press, 1994.
Catholic Social Teaching
This course relates the teachings of Jesus and the Church to the struggle for justice and peace in our world today. The principles of Catholic Social Teaching are studied. These include human dignity, respect for life, call to family and community, rights and responsibilities, common good, option for the poor and vulnerable, work and workers, solidarity and stewardship. These principles are applied to such issues as right to life, prejudice, racism, poverty, war, workers and environment. Students are invited to deepen consciousness and compassion and act responsibly in order to become citizens who promote peace in the domestic, national and global society. Text: Catholic Social Teaching: by Michael Pennock, Ave Maria Press, 2007
Call To Catholic Discipleship
This senior course, as they approach a new stage in their lives, will equip them with understanding of who they are created to be and concrete skills to respond to God’s Call to discipleship. Their efforts of self-discovery will be grounded in the teachings of Pope John Pauls II’s “Theology of the Body,” as well as use of other disciplines. Relationship skills will be learned to enrich their vocation in any one of the four lifestyles to be explored: Single, Married, Consecrated, or Ordained Life. They will be introduced to the services of the parish community, initial training to volunteer in these ministries and the theological basics of ministerial services to which we are all called. Text: Vocation: Our response to God’s Call , Harcourt Religion Publishers, 2008, and Theology of the Body for Teens; Ascension Press, 2006