Know Your Catholic Faith

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The Department of Theology, in cooperation with the Office of Campus Ministry, offers a series of 1-credit courses under the title “Know Your Catholic Faith (KYCF).”  

Each 1-credit course in the series is focused on a central feature of the Catholic faith, so that students learn what the Church teaches on these topics and gain a basic theological and personal understanding of them. The courses are based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church plus other pertinent texts, supplemented by personal reflection and experiential learning where appropriate. 

These courses should meet the needs of those students who know little or nothing about the faith, as well as those who are familiar with the faith but want a firmer grasp of Catholic doctrine. 

For more information on this series, including upcoming courses, contact Emily Hammock in the Department of Theology at 574-631-5732 or ehammock@nd.edu

Fall 2014 Know Your Catholic Faith Courses

THEO 30011 Know Your Catholic Faith: Mary

DATES: Wednesdays, 6:00-8:30pm 9/8-10/6. 
Course Description: This course will examine Mary in the Christian Tradition, particularly the primary teachings about Mary in Roman Catholicism and the implications of those teachings for contemporary Christian faith. The course is part of the Know Your Catholic Faith series offered through the Department of Theology and as such will examine all pertinent texts on Mary from the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Does not fulfill the 2nd theology university requirement. 
 

THEO 30045 Know Your Catholic Faith: Who Can Be Saved?

DATES: Wednesdays, 7:00-9:05pm, 9/3-10/8.
Course Description: This course will examine Catholic teaching on the possibility of salvation for those who do not share the Catholic faith. Can atheists be saved or followers of other religions such as Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists? And what precisely is meant by salvation? How has Catholic teaching on these issues evolved through the centuries? The course is part of the Know Your Catholic Faith series offered through the Department of Theology and does not fulfill the 2nd theology university requirement. 
 
THEO 33502 Know Your Catholic Faith: Saints
 
DATES: Wednesdays, 6:30-9:30pm 9/3-10/8. 
Course Description: A saint provides a vision of a life lived with God as well as a model for how to live this life. In this course, we will look at specific saints to see the ways in which their lives bear witness to the love of God, while also considering the spiritual practices and pathways that these saints offer to the life of the Church. 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 communal and individual prayer. 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.  
 

Spring 2014 Know Your Catholic Faith Courses

THEO 30043 Know Your Catholic Faith: Catholic Social Teaching and the Environment 

Course Description:
DATES 26 March 9-10 am (on campus), 29th -30th March (Off campus) , 2nd April 2014 (on campus) 9-10am. A particular focus for the proposed course will be on the writings on the environment of more recent popes, including that of Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis. Pope John Paul II showed a particular affinity with the natural world that surfaced in his teaching and in his guided "nature" retreats. We will explore the theological issues behind such writing and the relationship between ecology and social justice. This course will take place in a retreat setting over a weekend as a way of enhancing learning, and assessment will be based on a reflective journal that you will complete during the retreat. There will be one class briefing session of one hour on campus prior to the course, and one follow up session after it. 
 
 
THEO 30044 Know Your Catholic Faith: the Spirituality of Pope Francis 
 
Course Description:
When Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the Archbishop of Buenos Aires, was elected Pope last March and took the name of Francs, many people were surprised: not least because he is the first Jesuit - in fact, a former Jesuit high-school teacher, novice director, and provincial superior - to be elected to that office in the Society's almost 500 years of history. Many of his statements and gestures since then have also surprised the world by their clear changes of style and emphasis from previous Papal pronouncements and practices. In this mini-course, I hope to consider some of the main features of Jesuit prayer and spirituality, and of the pastoral work traditionally done by members of the Society of Jesus through the centuries. Then, by reading some of Pope Francis' sermons and addresses and by thinking about how he lives, I hope to point to the influence of his Jesuit background on the model of leadership he is offering to the Church. 
 
 
THEO 33501 -  Responding to God's Call: Tensions in Vocational Discernment 
 
Course Description:
This course will attend to the unavoidable tensions involved in vocational discernment, while recognizing the relationship between these tensions and certain paradoxes of the Christian faith that underlie them. Particular topics treated in the course will include human desire and passions, God's will and human freedom, participation in multiple communities, and the responsibility to both openness and commitment in discernment. This course will take place in a retreat format, with two full-day Saturday sessions (January 25 and March 22). Students must attend each of these sessions in their entirety in order to participate in the course (approx. 9:30am to 5:30pm). 
 

Fall 2013 Know Your Catholic Faith Courses

THEO 30011 - Section 01: Know Your Catholic Faith: Mary (CRN 14708) 
 
Course Description:
 
This course will examine Mary in the Christian Tradition, particularly the primary teachings about Mary in Roman Catholicism and the implications of those teachings for contemporary Christian faith. The course is part of the Know Your Catholic Faith series offered through the Department of Theology and as such will examine all pertinent texts on Mary from the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Does not fulfill the 2nd theology university requirement. 
 
THEO 30030 - Section 01: KYCF: Creation (CRN 19741) 
 
Course Description:
 
The doctrine of creation is one of the most central doctrines of the Christian tradition: "it concerns the very foundations of human and Christian life, for it makes explicit the response of the Christian faith to the basic question that people of all times have asked themselves, 'Where do we come from?' "Where are we going?" (CCC #282). This course offers a brief theological introduction to the doctrine of creation, based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church and expanded theologically by readings from traditional and contemporary writers. We will also spend some time thinking and reading about the Incarnation in relationship to the doctrine of Creation This course is part of the Know Your Catholic Faith series of one-credit courses. 
 
THEO 30042 - Section 01: KYCF: The Cross (CRN 19789) 
 
Course Description:
 
This course will examine the death of Jesus within the context of the Bible and the Christian Tradition. The Paschal Mystery of Christ's cross and Resurrection stands at the center of the Good News that the apostles, and the Church following them, are to proclaim to the world. God's saving plan was accomplished, once for all, by the redemptive death of his Son Jesus Christ (Catechism of the Catholic Church, #571). This course will focus in particular on the ways Christians ? in the New Testament, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, various theological texts, film, art, and music  have understood the death of Jesus to be part of God's plan of salvation. This course is part of the Know Your Catholic Faith series and does not fulfill the 2nd theology university requirement. 
 
 
THEO 33504 - Section 01: KYCF: The Sacramental Life (CRN 19375) 
 
Course Description:
 
This course will attend to the sacramental shape and content of vocational discernment within the ecclesial context. Students will be invited to deepen their theological understanding of vocation through exploring and participating in the Church's sacramental life. As part of the "Responding to God's Call" series, this course will combine lectures and spiritual reflections with large and small group discussions, as well as communal and individual prayer. 
 

Spring 2013 Know Your Catholic Faith Courses

THEO 30014-01: Know Your Catholic Faith: Mass

Course Description:

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 30015-01: Know Your Catholic Faith: Ignation Spirit

Couse Description:

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 30037-01: Know Your Catholic Faith: A Catholic's View of World Religions

Course Description:

This course introduces the major religions of the world, describing their principle beliefs and practices as well as their development over time. The focus falls on the meaning of religious ideas and their impact on culture, from the arts, literature, and architecture to forms of law and governance. 
 

Fall 2012 Know Your Catholic Faith Courses

THEO 30011 - Section 01: Know Your Catholic Faith: Mary (CRN 15097)

Course Description:
This course will examine Mary in the Christian Tradition, particularly the primary teachings about Mary in Roman Catholicism and the implications of those teachings for contemporary Christian faith. The course is part of the Know Your Catholic Faith series offered through the Department of Theology and as such will examine all pertinent texts on Mary from the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Does not fulfill the 2nd theology university requirement.

THEO 30015 - Section 01: KnowYrCath Fa: Ignation Spirit (CRN 19354)
Long Title: Know Your Catholic Faith: Ignation Spirit

Course Description:
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.

Spring 2012 Know Your Catholic Faith Courses

 

THEO 30035 - Section 01: Know Yr Cath Faith: Cath Movie (CRN 29591)
Long Title: Know Your Catholic Faith: Catholicism, The Movie
Course Description:
The course will follow Robert Barron's DVE series, "Catholicism." We will watch the entire series and each episode will be followed by a discussion. Required reading is the "Cathechism of the Catholic Church."

 

THEO 30012 - Section 01: Know Yr Cath Faith: Eucharist (CRN 28473)
Long Title: Know Your Catholic Faith: Eucharist
Course Description:
In this Know Your Catholic Faith course, within the department of Theology, we examine the Eucharist as the source and summit of the Christian life. That is, the Eucharist is a mystery to be believed, celebrated, and lived. The primary reading for the course is Benedict XVI's Sacramentum caritatis, as well as selected passages from The Catechism of the Catholic Church.

 

THEO 30034 - Section 01: Know Yr Cath Faith: Mysticism (CRN 28909)
Long Title: Know Your Catholic Faith: Christian Mysticism
Course Description:
This course is offered as an introduction to the Christian mystical tradition from its roots in the first century to the present. Though it has many popular (and sometimes misleading) connotations, in the Christian tradition the word "mysticism" means experiential knowledge of God (cognitio Dei experimentalis) a kind of knowledge that typically has certain methods, proceeds in certain stages and, according to the testimony of many saints, culminates in something called "union" with God. We will begin by looking at the basis of Christian mysticism in the Old and New Testaments and then consider various examples of mysticism in the Christian East (e.g., Gregory Palamas) and the Christian West (e.g., Teresa of Avila), concluding with a discussion of mysticism in the Church today.

 

THEO 30033 - Section 01: Know Yr Cath Fth: Papacy (CRN 28908)
Long Title: Know Your Catholic Faith: Papacy
Course Description:
A lively look at the history and theology of the See of Rome and its occupants. Learn more about this intriguing and central element of Catholic life and self-understanding.