Spring 2013 Undergraduate Classes
Spring 2013 Courses
THEO 20103: One Jesus & His Many Portraits (CRN 26005)
This course explores the many different faith-portraits of Jesus painted by various books of the New Testament: e.g., from suffering servant abandoned by God through high priest interceding with God to Godself. In each case, the course will ask how this particular portrait did or did not have an impact on subsequent Christian faith and what it may say to faith in Christ today. The course will combine a lecture format with discussions, readings, and reflections on the readings.
THEO 20112: Bible, Black Church, Blues (CRN 28867) This course will build on the groundwork established in the Foundations of Theology course by providing exposure to three theological matrices that have had a decided impact on the development of Africana (i.e., African and African Diasporan) identity and culture in the North American Diaspora. The first is the symbolic universe of Africana biblical hermeneutics. The second is the Black Church. The third is that uniquely African American musical form known as Blues. Students will be given an opportunity to explore: the cosmological, ontological, anthropological, soteriological, and Christological assertions animating each of these milieus; their historical and contemporary points of intersection; and the ways in which each has influenced the other. Particular attention will be directed toward understanding the history of reception, interpretation, and appropriation of the Christian Bible by peoples of African descent; the evolution of the Black Church and the distinctive contributions made by Africana Catholics to it; and the emergence of Blues music, artists, and performance spaces as non-ecclesial loci of protest and crucibles in which Africana spiritualities of resistance have been and continue to be forged. Students will leave the course with a deeper appreciation of four issues, the implications of which are far reaching for those within the Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant branches of the larger Christian family. The first is how culture and context shape the ways in which people read and appropriate sacred writings. The second is the impact that culture, memory, hermeneutics, and identity have on spirituality and ecclesiology. The third is the role that poetry and other art forms play as media for theological speculation and construction. The fourth is the pivotal impact that enculturation has on theology, pastoral care, ministry, and ecumenism. The class will also introduce students to those essential sources - both primary and secondary - methodologies, core questions, and debates foundational for a theological assessment of these universes of theological discourse. It will also expose them to three interdisciplinary subfields that span and inform the disciplines of Theology and Africana Studies: (1) the history of Africana biblical interpretation in North America; (2) Black Church Studies; and (3) Blues Studies.
THEO 20206: U.S. Latino Spirituality (CRN 21978)
The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the dynamic origins, development and present status of the collective spirituality of the Latinos/as living in the USA. Emphasis will be placed on the Mexican Americans since they are not only the largest group but likewise the ones who have been living in the USA the longest. Drawing on history, cultural anthropology, Christian Theology and your own experience, this course will explore the roots and development of contemporary Latino Spirituality in the United States. As we explore in depth the spirituality of a people, this course will also help you discover and explore the roots and development of your own collective and personal spirituality.
THEO 20249: Eastern Churches (CRN 25124)
The course provides an overview of the variety of the Eastern rite Churches belonging to different cultural traditions of Eastern Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean world. The students will be introduced to the theological views and liturgical life of the Eastern rite Christians, i.e., Orthodox, Oriental and Eastern Catholic, and their fascinating history. In the second part of the course we shall explore the Byzantine rite Churches in more detail, and discuss the challenges their theology and history present to the Christian world at large. Special attention will be given to Slavic Christianity and especially Russian and Ukrainian religious history. Reflection on the diversity of Christian traditions will lead to important insights into theological topics of central importance for today such as theology of culture, ecclesiology, sacramental theology and theology of history.
THEO 20251: The Catholic Faith (CRN 25426 & 28869)This course is a theological introduction to the basic teachings of the Catholic faith. The primary text is the Catechism of the Catholic Church. This will be supplemented by theological source readings from all periods. The emphasis will be on the coherence of the system of basic Catholic teaching as a whole. The argument is that the coherence is located in the love of God which lies at the heart of all Christian mysteries. "Love alone is credible" in the words of one famous theologian of the twentieth century and it is that love, and that credibility, that we will set ourselves the task of investigating.
THEO 20255: Christ, Nature & Ends of World (CRN 28870) This course introduces students to primary texts regarding nature, the created order and ecology in the Christian theological tradition from the patristic to the modern era. Through critical study and discussion students will develop the capacity to utilize these texts to address questions regarding the theological meaning of the natural world, the relationship of humans to non-human nature, and issues in ecology and environmental ethics.
THEO 20412: Christian Initiation & Eucharist (CRN 29152) The Rites of Christian Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and First Eucharist) and the Eucharistic Liturgy as the primary sacramental celebrations of and in the Church: their biblical and anthropological foundations, historical evolution, contemporary forms and pastoral effectiveness.
THEO 20420: Savoring the Mystery (CRN 28872) This course provides an introduction to Christian doctrine through special attention to the art of Christian preaching. Students will read sermons from throughout Christian history, including those by Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant preachers. The course will consider how Christians have undertaken the art of Scriptural interpretation; the relationship between theology and spirituality; the role of the liturgical year in shaping Christian doctrine; and, how Christians have interacted with major social and intellectual trends in communicating Christianity in a variety of contexts. Students in this course will thus be introduced to a theology of revelation, a theology of preaching, a theology of doctrine in a liturgical context, a theology of culture, and the contours of spiritual theology.
THEO 20421: Christian Rituals and Culture (CRN 29153 & 29154) This course will introduce student to the theological study of Christian rituals, from the origins of distinctively Christian practices such as baptism and Eucharist in the early Church that helped Christians establish a distinctive identity vis-à-vis their surrounding culture to contemporary questions of how Christian practices are presented in and influenced by new media in a world of many diverse cultures. After a brief survey of theories or ritual, we will explore the historical development and current practice of select rituals within the Christian tradition, including sacramental rites of passage (rituals surrounding Christian baptism, marriage, and death), eating (Eucharist), marking time (prayer and holy days), and devotional practices (pilgrimage and veneration of the saints).
THEO 20605: Intro to Catholic Moral Theology (CRN 20605) This course will be structured into three sections, addressing respectively, biblical foundations, fundamental topics, and selected contemporary ethical questions. The biblical section of the course will study some of the key ethical perspectives and teachings of the Scriptures, primarily the Gospels and the Pauline letters. This section will be followed by an introduction to several fundamental topics in moral theology including (1) the theology of grace; (2) the orientation of ethics toward the achievement of happiness; (3) the development of the moral and theological virtues as capacities that enable us to act well; (4) the relation between moral truth and authentic human freedom; (5) the natural law, and (6) the stages and analysis of moral action. The third section of the course will consider some contemporary ethical questions in the context of this biblical and systematic framework. The course will draw primarily upon the classical Catholic tradition, as represented especially by St. Thomas Aquinas. We will also read selected sections of recent encyclical letters by Pope John Paul II including his "Veritatis Splendor (On the Splendor of the Truth), Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life)" and "Fides et Ratio (On Faith and Reason)." Students will be expected to write a summary of a short reading for each class, write one five-page paper for each of the first two sections of the course, write a final 10-page paper applying what has been studied to a particular ethical question, and present a summary of this paper to the class.
THEO 20619: Rich, Poor, and War (CRN 19345)
The course analyzes the role of economics in violence. It first traces Catholic social teaching on the person in society in contrast with other views. It then addresses the difference Catholic social teaching and these competing views make in understanding the role of economics in violence in the domestic, economic and international political spheres.
THEO 20637: Biomedical Ethics (CRN 28874) What would it mean to practice medicine in genuine service to God and to one's fellow human beings? This course examines the practice of medicine in a Catholic and more broadly Christian context. It covers cutting-edge clinical and research issues raised by technology, issues related to health and poverty in a global context, and the ethical formation of physicians as virtuous practitioners. In addition to lectures on Mondays and Wednesdays, Friday sessions will be devoted to discussion of cases.
THEO 20658: Theology of Nature (CRN 28875, 28876 & 29155) This course introduces students to primary texts regarding nature, the created order and ecology in the Christian theological tradition from the patristic to the modern era. Through critical study and discussion students will develop the capacity to utilize these texts to address questions regarding the theological meaning of the natural world, the relationship of humans to non-human nature, and issues in ecology and environmental ethics.
THEO 20801: Theology, Disability and Dependence (CRN 29156) This course explores theological understandings of and approaches to physical and mental disability. On the one hand, it explores ways in which attentiveness to disability and those with disabilities might allow for richer and deeper theological reflection. At the same time, it explores ways in which theological concepts and insights might contribute to our understanding of disability. For this course students will be required to write several short reflections, a major paper, and take a midterm and final exam. The course will also include a practical component facilitated by the Center for Social Concerns.
THEO 20825: World Religions & Catholicism in Dialogue (CRN 22316)
To explore Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and to examine the Christian theological appraisal of the other world religions. This course is a study in comparative theology and will enable students to gain a deeper understanding of Christianity by "passing over" into and experiencing as well as appraising the different major religious traditions of the world.
THEO 20862: Church in History & Eternity (CRN 27060) This course will discuss ways of linking the historical Church with the eschatological and eternal church. We will tackle the relationship between the sinfulness of the Church in time (focusing on the 20th century) and the impeccability which is claimed for the eternal Church. This will involve study of Marian symbols for the Church. We will consider the problematic of the relation between the Church and the human race as a whole from its earliest origins in the Old Testament. A basic question of the course will be "who is the church, in history and in eternity?" We will analyze the idea of the Church as the continuation of the Incarnation in Möhler, Caryll Houselander and Corpus Mysticum.
THEO 20893: Exploring God: Theology as Spirit (CRN 28877) This course will serve as an introduction to the tradition of Christian theology through the lens of spirituality. Its foundational assumption is deeply embedded in that tradition: namely, that authentic doctrine, genuine spiritual experience, and right action in the world are inextricably bound up together. The course will examine several major spiritual pathways in the tradition, their sources, expressions, and viability for our contemporary context.
THEO 20894: Christian Experience: Vocation & Theological Imagination (CRN 28878) This course provides an entrée into the theological foundations of Christian vocation through considering the transformation of human experience by means of the theological imagination. That God calls is an objective fact of revelation. How human beings perceive and appropriate this call is an entirely different matter. Thus, this course considers both the central images of Christian salvation history from creation to eschatology, as well as how these images were appropriated in the lived experience of Christianity. This course is designed to assist Notre Dame undergraduates who are preparing to work as "Mentors-in-Faith" within Notre Dame Vision.
THEO 20895: Christianity and Judaism (CRN 26011 & 28879) God's covenant with the Jewish people is absolutely foundational for Christianity, and the contemporary Church has insisted that this covenant is irrevocable, remaining active for the Jewish people today. This course analyzes the relationship between Christianity and Judaism with particular focus on the theological and historical treatment of Jews and Judaism by Christians and within Christian theology. Throughout Judaism is engaged as "internal" to Christian self-understanding and "comparatively" as an ongoing, distinct religious tradition After a brief overview of Judaism, this course proceeds historically from the time of Jesus and the "parting of the ways" to our contemporary situation. Central issues engaged include God's covenant with Israel, the development of a negative image of post-biblical Judaism within Christianity, the relationship between anti-Judaism and anti-Semitism, hostility and violence towards Jews, and moments of fruitful interaction. The final third of the course engages significant positive developments in Catholic teaching and practices since Vatican II (1965) and engages several attempts to (re-)interpret the Jewish-Christian relationship from a variety of Jewish and Christian perspectives.
THEO 22637: Biomedical Ethics Discussion (CRN 28880, 28881, 28882) A discussion of ethical problems in the medical profession in light of natural law and Christian moral principles.
THEO 30014-01: Know Your Catholic Faith: Mass (CRN 29157) There will be two parts to this course. In the first half we will read a brief theological commentary on the Mass which will allow us to notice its structure, and the important theological dimensions of the Mass in its parts and in its entirety. This will have a Trinitarian focus. In the second half we will let student interest decide what to cover. Possibilities include ecumenical questions, historical origins, rubrics, mass a sacrifice, rubrics, what is participation, etc.
THEO 30015: Know Your Catholic Faith: Ignation Spirit (CRN 19354)
This course, which will be conducted in the intensive "retreat" style on a single weekend, invites students to learn first-hand about the distinctive approach to contemplative prayer aimed at conversion of life and practical decisions for discipleship that is classically embodied in St. Ignatius Loyola's Spiritual Exercises. After an introductory lecture on the theology of Christian prayer and the distinctive role of Ignatius in Christian spirituality, students will participate in lectures and presentations on the text and structure of the exercises, and will then be asked to pray through the various meditations and considerations Ignatius offers, in a brief but concentrated way. As background to the course, students will be expected to have read the section on prayer in the catechism of the Catholic Church and Ignatius of Loyola's autobiography.
THEO 300037-01: Know Your Catholic Faith: Catholic View, World Religions (CRN 29158) This course is meant to offer students a chance to reflect on other world religions from the Catholic’s view point.
THEO 30038: Know Your Catholic Faith: Holy Cross Spirituality (CRN 29541) Since founding the University in 1842, the Congregation of Holy Cross has guided and shaped the mission of Notre Dame. This course explores the unique spirituality and educational vision of Holy Cross, beginning with the Congregation’s founder, Blessed Basil Moreau. After examining Moreau’s life and theological writings, the course explores how this founding charism was passed on and embodied by succeeding generations of Holy Cross religious, including Fr. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., and Saint Andre Bessette, the Congregation’s first canonized saint. The course concludes by exploring how this spirituality enlivens the worldwide mission of Holy Cross today, including in particular the University of Notre Dame, and addressing how students at Holy Cross schools can deepen their discipleship through this spirituality.
THEO 30653-01: Politics and Conscience (CRN 25392) Against a backdrop of large-scale society, mass movements, and technological bureaucracy, the invocation of "conscience" recalls the individual human person as a meaningful actor in the political sphere. But what is conscience, and what are its rights and responsibilities? What is it about conscience that ought to command governmental respect? Are there limits to its autonomy? What role should conscience play in questions of war and peace, law-abidingness and civil disobedience, citizenship and political leadership? And how does the notion of conscience relate to concepts of natural law and natural rights, rationality and prudence, religion and toleration? This course engages such questions through readings from the Catholic intellectual tradition (Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Thomas More, Fransisco de Vitoria, Desiderius Erasmus, John Henry Newman, Karol Wojty'a/John Paul II, and Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI) and other writers of the history of ethical-political thought (Cicero, Seneca, John Locke, Mahatma Ghandi, Jan Pato'ka, and Alexandr Solzhenitsyn). We consider also various contemporary reflections on conscience expressed in films, essays, letters, plays, short stories, speeches, and declarations, beginning with Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" and Václav Havel's speech "Politics and Conscience." This class serves as both the capstone course for the interdisciplinary minor Philosophy in the Catholic Tradition and an upper-level elective for Political Science majors and Peace Studies minors. Its format combines lecture and seminar-style discussion.
THEO 33503-01: Biblical Imagination (CRN 28884) Ancient and medieval biblical interpretation considered four senses of the Scriptures: the literal, the allegorical, the moral, and the anagogical. In other words, the Scriptures reveal to us what God has done in history as recorded in the text (the literal); the centrality of Christ in the narrative (the allegorical); how Christians are to mold their lives according to the Word of God (moral); and what it will be like to enjoy God for eternity (anagogical). Through contemplating these four senses, the biblical word is written upon the human heart, allowing us to see our own narratives in light of the Scriptures. In this course, we will look at specific biblical passages according to these four senses, chewing upon the word until it becomes part of our very identity. As part of the “Responding to God’s Call” series, this course will combine theological study with large and small group discussions, as well as participation in Sunday Vespers at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart. The series as a whole seeks to provide theological, spiritual, and communal resources for ongoing discernment. The staff of the Notre Dame Vision program will facilitate this course in collaboration with the Department of Theology.
THEO 40003- 01: Elementary Hebrew II (CRN 28885) This is the second of a two-semester introductory course in Biblical Hebrew; under normal circumstances, the student must complete the first in order to enroll in the second. In addition to the completion of Lambdin's elementary grammar, students are introduced to some (modified) Biblical texts.
THEO 40005-01: Intermediate Hebrew II (28886) This fourth-semester course in biblical Hebrew will continue and build upon THEO 40004. While the latter was devoted to the reading of biblical prose, this installment of Intermediate Hebrew will introduce students to the beauty of biblical Hebrew poetry. Our efforts will be focused on the preparation, oral reading, and translation of selected biblical passages. But time also will be spent continuing to review basic grammar as well as developing an appreciation of syntax and poetic structure (e.g. parallelism) in this powerful medium of prayer, prophetic revelation, and the quest for Wisdom in ancient Israel.
THEO 40108: Intro to the New Testament (22317) A presentation of all the major approaches important for the understanding and study of the literature of the canonical New Testament in its historical, social and literary context. Emphasis on the various methodologies which have been applied to the study of the New Testament, including historical criticism, form criticism, redaction criticism, source criticism, narrative criticism, rhetorical criticism, and social science criticism. Recent developments in the quest for the historical Jesus will be discussed, as will recent attempts to reconstruct the life and teachings of Paul. Important church documents on the Bible will be read, including, "De providentissimus Deus" (1893), "Divino Afflante Spiritu" (1943), "Instruction Concerning the Historical Truth of the Gospels" (1964), "Dei Verbum" (1965), and "The Interpretation of the Bible in the Church" (1995).
THEO 40202-01 and 40202-02: The Christian Tradition II (21852 & 25134) The course will examine the development of the Christian tradition from the time of the Reformation to the present, with special attention to the confessional division of the western Christian tradition during the Reformation, and the responses that post-Reformation Christian traditions make to the secularization of Western culture. The objective of this course is to develop an ecumenical understanding of contemporary Christian traditions. Class time each week will consist of two lectures and one student-led discussion. Evaluation will be based on discussion, four short papers, and a final exam. Spring only.
THEO 40245: Augustine (CRN 28887) Augustine is arguably the single most influential theologian in the West. There is in almost every Western theologian some strain that is Augustinian, and many of the disputes in Western Christendom can be regarded as arguments pitting one strain of Augustinian tradition against another. The study of Augustine, therefore, is essential for an understanding of most subsequent Christian theology. This course attempts to introduce students to the study of Augustine in an attempt to gauge the specific and distinctive character of his theology over a broad range of issues. Special attention will be given to the development of Augustine's thought. The class hopes to be useful to students who approach Augustine from a variety of perspectives and interests, and as such will have a strongly textual, rather than thematic, principle of organization, emphasizing the reading of whole works rather than excerpts topically arranged. Although this is an advanced introduction, the course is suitable for those with little exposure to Augustine.
THEO 40277: Early Christian Jerusalem (CRN 28888) How did Christians appropriate and create traditions about the holy land and city of Jerusalem? Early Christianity, emphasizing its otherwordly and international mission, contained differing opinions about the importance of these places. This course explores various early Christian traditions about Jerusalem and the land of Israel -- their holiness for Christians as the land of promise, the site of the ministry and passion of Jesus, and, from the third to the seventh centuries, a center for pilgrims and monastic establishments. It also considers the role of the bishops of Jerusalem in theological controversy, imperial largesse and building programs and the ongoing importance of Jerusalem for ancient Judaism. The course also explores the adjustments among religious communities invested in the city and the land during the first centuries after the arrival of Islam.
THEO 40287: Eucharist in the Middle Ages (CRN 28889) The Eucharist stands at the heart of western European Christianity in the high Middle Ages. The insistence of church officials on regular reception of the Eucharist; the numerous scholastic treatments of the theoretical issues associated with the Eucharist; the recourse by spiritual authors, especially women, to the Eucharist to express their most profound religious and devotional insights; the pointed reference to the Christ Eucharistically-present to establish Christian identity and to distinguish the members of Christ from others, both within and outside of western Europe; the development of new rituals focused on aspects of the Eucharist; the burgeoning of artistic representations of Eucharistic themes-all testify to the centrality of the Eucharist in medieval theological and religious consciousness. Through the close reading of representative texts by a wide variety of 13th-century authors, and, the study of the different kinds of 'Eucharistic' art, this course examines the uses made of the Eucharist by a broad spectrum of high medieval Christians. A special concern of the course is the relation between Eucharistic doctrine and religious practice-to what extent have teachings about transubstantiation and real presence shaped religious expression? How has religious experience itself occasioned the refinement of these doctrines?
THEO 40288: Jesus and the Spiritual Life (28890) From the very origins of the Christian tradition, theologians have sought the face of Jesus both through systematic theological reflection on the nature of Jesus’ person and saving work and through that encounter with the risen and ascended Jesus by prayer and discipleship commonly known as the Christian spiritual life. In this course, we will consider how these two aspects of Christology – the theological and the spiritual – have come together in the writings of some of the patristic and medieval Church’s most eminent theologians. In what ways, we will ask, does a particular theological account of Jesus’ person and saving work influence or shape devotion to him by prayer and discipleship? And, conversely, how do various forms of prayer and discipleship to Jesus influence or shape particular theological accounts of his person and work? Following an overview of the early Church’s Christological controversy and its biblical origins, we will undertake a sustained, careful reading of several classical Christological texts from Athanasius, Gregory Nazianzus, Augustine, Bernard of Clairvaux, Bonaventure, and Thomas Aquinas. As we work through these texts, students will be invited, and encouraged, to consider the significance of these classic Christological reflections for their own lives and personal spiritual development. How, we will ask ourselves and each other, do these Christologies challenge us to reflect more deeply on our core beliefs about Jesus and to deepen our encounter with him by our prayer and discipleship in the world of today. Our inquiry will be primarily discussion-based and will entail several exegetical papers as well as a final exam.
THEO 40289: Modern Ecclesial Movements (28891) At the second World Congress of Ecclesial Movements in Rome (May 31-June 2, 2006), over 250,000 people from approximately 150 ecclesial movements gathered with Pope Benedict XVI in St. Peter’s Square. Both Pope Benedict and Pope John Paul II have hailed the rise of the ecclesial movements, especially among the laity, as a Pentecostal event within the history of the Church, a ‘new springtime’ that confirms the ‘universal call to holiness’ issued at Vatican Council II. In 2009 Pope Benedict wrote to Cardinal Josef Cordes: ‘It is impossible not to think of the life of the Church of our own time without including these gifts of God within it.’ In this course we interpret the ecclesial movements as both anticipating and actualizing the theological insights of the Council concerning the laity. We consider the creative polarities between institution and charism, hierarchy and prophecy, Christology and Pneumtology, Christology and Mariology, that contribute to the understanding and testing of these movements. We study the history, charism, and ecclesial impact of several of these movements: L’Arche, charismatic Renewal, Catholic Worker, Communion and Liberation, Community of Sant’Egidio, Cursillo, Focolare, Madonna house Apostolate, Neocatechumenal Way, and Schoenstatt.
THEO 40290: Medieval Ecclesiology (29329) This course examines medieval theological thinking about the Church-her unity, her boundaries, the variety of cultural traditions within her, her place in the world, and the ways the Church should be structured and governed. We shall base our discussions upon the reading of the medieval Latin texts in translation from the time of the Gregorian Reform in the 11th century to the age of Conciliarism and the Pre-Reformers in the 15th century. The course will also provide an introduction into the main texts, figures and tenets of Byzantine ecclesiological thinking from the 11th century up to 1453 (about one third of the course material). We shall also explore and discuss the opportunities and challenges medieval thinking poses to contemporary ecclesiological discourse.
THEO 40402: Feasts and Seasons (28892) The Church measures time and lives not by the civic calendar but according to its own cycle of feasts and seasons. This course will explore the origins, evolution, and theological meaning of the central feasts and seasons of what is called the liturgical or Church year: the original Christian feast of Sunday; Advent, Christmas, and Epiphany; Lent, Easter, and Pentecost; and with some attention to the feasts of the saints. What do we celebrate on such occasions and how might we celebrate these feasts and seasons "fully," "consciously," and "actively?" Of special interest to those who work with the liturgical year in a variety of ways and for all who seek to understand the way in which the Church expresses itself theologically by means of a particular calendar, as well as for Theology Majors and interested graduate students in theology.
THEO 40624: Restorative Justice (28893) This course will begin by exploring the theoretical concept of justice in general and from the perspective of virtue ethics. Against that background, it will address various kinds of justice, including economic, social, racial, gender, environmental, and criminal justice with a view toward cultivating a restorative perspective. Legal concerns as well as theological insights from the Christian and other faith traditions will shape the course’s developing account of restorative justice. Primary practices of restorative justice (circles, conferencing, and victim-offender dialogue) will receive sustained attention, along with issues challenging the implementation of restorative justice. This is a community-based learning course, requiring students to perform 20 hours of work in the local community at pre-arranged sites as part of the course. Enrollment is limited to 25 students. Graduate and law students will be required to produce 3 short papers and a 25-page paper based upon their fieldwork and related research. Undergraduate students will produce a portfolio totaling 15 pages, in addition to 2 short papers and an integration notebook.
THEO 40625: War, Peace, Catholic Imagination (29159) The Catholic Church boasts a rich tradition of reflection and action on war and peace. This course introduces students to the most well-known and well-developed part of that tradition: just war and pacifism. But it goes further and considers the relationship between the just war-pacifism strands of the tradition and the development of a theology, ethics and praxis of peacebuilding – i.e., the Church’s approach to conflict prevention, conflict transformation and post-conflict reconciliation. In considering these topics, the course will emphasize (1) the “living” nature of the tradition, the link between theory and practice, principles and policy; and (2) the importance of grounding ethics and action on war and peace in an understanding of Christian vocation. Drawing on my seventeen years as a senior official of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and my current role as coordinator of the Catholic Peacebuilding Network, the course will examine these broad topics in light of specific cases and issues, including the Iraq interventions, humanitarian intervention, nuclear disarmament, the landmines campaign, the role of the UN, conscientious objection, the Church’s role in Track Two diplomacy and truth and reconciliation processes, and other issues. Students will have an opportunity to engage directly with Catholic leaders who are working on these issues. This course will also afford students the opportunity, primarily through a research paper, to contribute to the Catholic Peacebuilding Network’s (cpn.nd.edu) work in the Philippines, Colombia, the Great Lakes region of Africa, and South Sudan. Other course assignments will help students develop their written and oral skills in applied ethics through policy memos, opinion pieces (or blogs), homilies, and video-taped media interviews. There will be no in-class exams.
THEO 40811: Religion and Autobiography (24235) A course on the spiritual journey of the individual person, drawing on diaries and autobiographies. The first half is on the story of the life in terms of feeling and imagination and insight and choice, and the second half is on the story of the person in terms of the life project, the boundary situations of life, and conversion of the mind, of heart, and of soul. Readings: Saint Augustine, "Confessions;" Martin Buber, "The Way of Men;" Carolina Maria de Jesus, "Child of the Dark;" John Dunne, "Reasons of the Heart" and "Search for God in Time and Memory;" Etty Hillesum, "An Interrupted Life;" C.G. Jung, "Memories, Dreams, Reflections;" Rainer Maria Rilke, "Letters to a Young Poet" and "Reading the Gospel." Writings: a spiritual diary (not handed in), a term paper, and a midterm take-home and a final take-home exam.
THEO 40831: Chesterton and Catholicism (28894) G. K. Chesterton was a man with many sides, but this course will confine itself to only one, and that is his theological front. About his conversion to Catholicism he wrote to a friend, "As you may possibly guess, I want to consider my position about the biggest thing of all, whether I am to be inside it or outside it." We will consider his position by reading primary works in theology that led up to and followed his decision, among them Orthodoxy, Tremendous Trifles, The Everlasting Man, biographies of St. Thomas and St. Francis, The Thing, and What's Wrong with the World. In these we will follow his own advice that “To become a Catholic is not to leave off thinking, but to learn how to think. It is so in exactly the same sense in which to recover from palsy is not to leave off moving but to learn how to move."
THEO 40858: The World of Buddhism (CRN 29160)
A thematic introduction to the pan-Asian (i.e., South, Southeast, and Central Asian as well as East Asian) Buddhist tradition exploring the fundamentals of Buddhist doctrine and practice while also sampling major themes in the religion's social, cultural, and material history. Among the particular topics to be covered are: the life of the Buddha (history & hagiography), the "Four Noble Truths" (the essentials of the Buddhist "creed"), the Buddhist canon (the nature and scope of Buddhist scripture), Buddhist cosmology (Buddhist conceptions of the formation and structure of the universe, i.e., of time and space), Buddhist monasticism, meditation and the Buddhist contemplative life, Buddhist ethics, the ritual lives of Buddhists, Buddhism and politics, Buddhist "family values," Buddhism and the arts, etc.
THEO 43001: Proseminar (21015) This course gives an introduction to the study of theology. In particular, it provides:  an overview of theology and its disciplines / areas of specialization,  bibliographies of primary and secondary sources for theological research, and  information about internships and career opportunities for theology majors. The course meets once each week for 50 minutes throughout the semester. Students are expected to attend every class. Two short papers are required at the end of the semester. Required of all Theology majors.
THEO 43203: Joint Seminar Phil/Theo: Ratzinger (CRN 24564) A close study of some of the most important works of Joseph Ratzinger, both before and after his elevation to the Papacy as Pope Benedict XVI. The works we will be reading from are Introduction to Christianity (1969, 2004), What it Means to be a Christian (1965, 2005), The Nature and Mission of Theology (1995), Truth and Tolerance (2004), The Spirit of the Liturgy (2000) , and (hot off the press) Jesus of Nazareth, Part 3: The Infancy Narratives (2012), along with a essays on conscience and hermeneutics. The Holy Father's encyclicals Deus est Caritas and Spe Salvi will constitute the subject matter for two of the three short (6-7 pp.) papers the students will write; the other paper will be on his Regensberg Lecture.
THEO 48002: Ph/Th Thesis Writing (CRN 22726)
Under the direction of a faculty member, students define a topic, undertake independent research, and write a thesis. This course is largely for the joint THEO-PHIL major who chooses to write the senior thesis in theology. It may be used in other special circumstances.
THEO 48003: Honors Thesis Writing (22191) Dedicated to the completion and defense of an Honors Thesis.