Spring 2012 Course Descriptions

600 Level THST Courses
  • THST 613: Buddhism & Jainism
  • THST 616: Jewish/Christian Relations
  • THST 623: History of Christian Spirituality
  • THST 630: Intro to Systematic Theology
  • THST 660: Foundation of Theological Ethics
  • THST 671: Pastoral Approaches to Religious Education
  • THST 673: Faith & Culture for Pastoral Ministry (Orange CoHort Only)
  • THST 674: Theory/Pract. Pastoral Leadership
  • THST 675: Spiritual Formation for Pastoral Ministry
  • THST 689: Supervised Pastoral Field Education
  • THST 690: Directed Research
  • THST 694: Thesis
  • THST 696: Research & Writing Seminar
  • THST 697: Comprehensive Exam
  • THST 698: SS -
Integration Seminar (Orange CoHort Only)
400 Level THST Courses
Please note: In order to take a 400 Level THST for course credit, instructor and department approval are required.
  • THST 430: Christology
  • THST 498: SS: Desert, Spirit, Flesh, Place
  • THST 498: Sacraments & Sacramentality

 




























600 Level THST Courses


COURSE TITLE: Buddhism and Jainism, THST 613
Mondays, 4:30 to 7 p.m.
INSTRUCTOR: Christopher Chapple, Doshi Professor of Indic and Comparative Theology, University Hall 3762, cchapple@lmu.edu, 310-338-2846

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
In this graduate seminar we will learn the foundational history and theology of two important Asian religions: Buddhism and Jainism. Both originated in India. Buddhism has a long history in all countries of Asia, while Jainism has remained largely on the subcontinent. We will study the lives of the founders (Siddhartha Gautama for Buddhism and the 24 Tirthankaras for Jainism), the key doctrines (suffering, impermanence, no-self for Buddhism; the purification of the soul from karmic bondage for Jainism), historical developments and major sects, and contemporary communities of practice.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
Each student will become familiar with the core themes and practices of these two faiths. This will include familiarity with their history and development as well as a close reading of primary source material. Each student will be able to interpret these traditions through the methodology of comparative theology, seeking to engage the truths of these faiths by applying them to contemporary issues.

REQUIRED TEXTS
Ven. Analayo. Satipatthana Sutta: The Direct Path to Realization.
Donald Mitchell. Buddhism.
Patrul Rinpoche. The Words of My Perfect Master.
Alan Babb. Ascetics and Kings in a Jain Ritual.
Shugan Jain, tr. Tattvartha Sutra.
Christopher Chapple. Reconciling Yogas: The Yogadrstisamuccaya of Haribhadra.
Padmanabh Jaini. The Jaina Path of Purification.

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
Each student will write one paper of approximately ten to fifteen pages on Jainism and one paper of equal length on Buddhism. The first paper will apply Jaina principles and practices to an ethical situation in your area of interest and concern. This will also be shared with the class. The second paper will focus on a Buddhist text of your choosing, which you will read in translation, analyze, and present to the class.

COURSE TITLE: Jewish/Christian Relations: History and Theology
COURSE NUMBER: THST 616.01
TIMES/DAYS: WED 4:30-7:00pm

INSTRUCTORS: Dr. Gil Klein & Dr. Jeffrey S. Siker (team-taught)

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
This course will examine the history and theology of Jewish/Christian relations, with a focus on the depiction of Jews and Judaism in Christian theology, and the depiction of Christians and Christianity within Jewish theological reflection. Central to the course is the reading and study of primary sources throughout Jewish and Christian tradition that illustrates the long and often difficult history of the relationships between Jews and Christians. The course will study Jewish/Christian relations from the first through the twenty-first centuries. Principal topics include:
· The contexts of second Temple Judaism that gave rise to both rabbinic Judaism and Christianity
· The intramural conflicts between different Jewish groups in first-century Palestine
· The teaching of Jesus within the context of formative rabbinic Judaism
· Early Christian theologizing about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus in light of Jewish faith
· The shift from Jewish Christianity to Gentile Christianity and the conflicts this caused with Judaism
· The development of "contra Ioudaios" literature in second & third century Christianity
· The significance of the Christianization of the Roman Empire
· Jewish/Christian relations in the Medieval era
· The rise of Protestantism and attitudes of Luther/Calvin towards the Jews
· From Jewish ghettos to Jewish emancipation
· Christian anti-Judaism and the Holocaust
· Jews, Christians, the Holy Land, and the State of Israel
· Modern Jewish/Christian relations and covenant theology  

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
1) Students will know the history of Jewish/Christian relations and the theologies underlying both Christian anti-Judaism and post-Holocaust Christian affirmation of the Jewish covenant tradition
2) Students will be able to engage in Jewish/Christian dialogue with an informed understanding of the history and theology that has shaped these relations over the centuries
3) Students will value the dynamic character of the Jewish and Christian traditions in relation to each other

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND
None

REQUIRED TEXTS:
· A Bible (modern translation)
· E. Kessler, An Introduction to Jewish/Christian Relations
· Reading Packet on Jewish/Christian History & Theology

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
· Seminar participation
· Two short papers (5-7 pages each)
· Midterm Exam
· Major Final Research Paper (15-20 pages)

COURSE TITLE: History of Christian Spirituality
COURSE NUMBER: THST 623
SECTION TIMES/DAYS: Tuesday, 7:15-9:45
INSTRUCTOR: Douglas Burton-Christie

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
"A Theologian is one who prays. One who prays is a theologian." This saying from the early Christian monk Evagrius of Pontus points to an important truth long supported by the Christian community: that theological reflection and knowledge must always be rooted in a deep experiential awareness of God. The history of Christian spirituality can be understood as a sustained effort to come to a fuller apprehension of this truth and its significance. This course will focus on the question of what it means to be alive in God within the Christian spiritual tradition and how responses to this question have changed and developed across distinct historical periods. We will engage in a close reading of several classic texts of Christian spirituality from different historical moments in an effort to understand how the Christian community conceived of and worked to facilitate a deep experience of what was commonly known as the "contemplative life." We will also consider how contemplative practice was understood to contribute to the life of the larger community, and to help with the work of healing a broken world.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
1. To gain a critical understanding of how Christian spirituality developed over time, in history, from its origins to its contemporary expressions.
2. To develop an ability to interpret spiritual experience critically and thoughtfully, and to articulate the meaning of such experience in relation to the wider field of human experience.
3. To develop a critical understanding of how contemplative practice came to be understood as central to the Christian spiritual life, and how this practice continued to shape the Christian community over time.

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND
None

REQUIRED TEXTS
McGuckin, John, The Book of Mystical Chapters (Shambala).
Augustine, The Confessions. (Oxford University Press).
Meister Eckhart, Selected Writings (Penguin).
The Cloud of Unknowing (Shambala).
Teresa of Avila, The Interior Castle. (Paulist).
Marilynne Robinson, Gilead (Picador).

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
1. Class Participation: (20%)
2. Short papers (3) (45%)
3. Final Paper: (35%)

COURSE TITLE: Introduction to Systematic Theology
COURSE NUMBER: THST 630.01
TERM: Spring Semester 2006
Instructor: Rev. James L. Fredericks, Ph.D.
Office: UNH 3765, 338-2857; Jfrederi@lmu.edu

COURSEDESCRIPTION:
The purpose of this course is threefold. First, the course provides graduate students with an opportunity for reflection on the contemporary situation that forms the context of both theological inquiry and pastoral ministry. Second, the course provides a survey of basic Christian doctrines (e.g. faith and revelation, God, Christology, ecclesiology, sacramental theology). Third, the course allows students to do research in depth into a particular theological issue.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
After successfully completing the course, students will have a theological grounding in the basic Christians doctrines and their inter-relationship. The course also seeks to develop within students the ability to place these basic doctrines in critical correlation with the contemporary pastoral issues.

REQUIREMENTS
This course is open to THST graduate students.

REQUIRED READINGS
1. Francis Schüssler Fiorenza and John P. Galvin editors, Systematic Theology: Roman Catholic Perspectives Vol. 1 and 2
2. PDF materials

COURSE REQUIREMENTS:
1. A research paper on a specific topic in systematic theology; 20 pages
2. Several short essays on required readings

COURSE TITLE: FOUNDATIONSOF THEOLOGICAL ETHICS
COURSE NUMBER: THST 660
SECTION TIME: M 7:15-9:45
INSTRUCTOR: ROBERTO DELL’ORO

COURSE DESCRIPTION
The course will introduce students to the foundations of theological ethics. After a historical introduction dealing with different models of ethical thinking, the course will look at the following: biblical roots of moral theology, the mediation of faith and moral reason -- with special reference to the relation of philosophical and theological ethics, the ecclesial dimension of Christian morality, the debate on normative theories and the integration of virtue ethics, fundamental moral option and action theory. Applications to contemporary issues in the fields of bioethics, social, and sexual ethics, as well as pastoral theology will be used to exemplify the meaning and function of different foundational frameworks and the relation between theory and practice in moral theology.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
To introduce students to basic methodological questions in fundamental moral theology
To learn critical tools for ethical decision making
To relate foundational frameworks to concrete normative problems
To understand how theological themes inform and shape moral arguments and ultimately moral life.

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND
Undergraduate degree

REQUIRED TEXTS
Klaus Demmer, Shaping the Moral Life: An Approach to Moral Theology, transl. by Roberto Dell’Oro (Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2000)
Richard M. Gula, Reason Informed by Faith: Foundations of Catholic Morality (New York: Paulist Press, 1989)
In addition, a Reader, prepared by the professor, will be available for purchase on the first day of class.

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
The course is a combination of lectures and student participation through discussion sessions. Assignments include one written in-class presentation, two essays (3-5 pages), and a research paper (15-20 pages) by the end of the semester.

COURSE TITLE: Pastoral Approaches to Religious Education
COURSE NUMBER: THST 671
SECTION TIMES/DAYS: (Section 01) 7:15 p.m. – 9:45 p.m. Monday
INSTRUCTOR: Fr. Michael Lee, S.J., Ed.D.

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
A close and careful reading of theories of Religious Education with focus on their biblical and theological foundations, their historical and sociological grounding, and their curricular implications. This course will critically examine the assumptions and arguments presented in recent Catholic Church documents on catechesis. Catechesis is that form of ecclesial action that leads both communities and individuals to theologically-grounded, maturity of faith. An innovative, group project via the Internet simulates pastoral planning for multicultural faith communities in Southern California.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
---To discuss and analyze critically the diverse foundations of Religious Education;
---To compare and contrast the assumptions and theological perspectives of authors;
---To develop written and oral communication skills through close-reading of texts, a variety of written assignments, and through frequent seminar discussions;
---To design and construct via the Internet a Religious Education event for a culturally diverse faith community;

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND:
Graduate Standing.

REQUIRED TEXTS
---Maria Harris. Fashion Me a People: Curriculum in the Church. (Louisville, KY:Westminster/John Knox Press, 1989). ISBN 978-0-664-24052-3
---Anne Marie Mongoven. The Prophetic Spirit of Catechesis: How We Share the Fire in Our Hearts. (Paulist Press: Mahwah, NJ, 2000). ISBN 978-0-8091-3922-4
---Kenneth H. Hill. Religious Education in the African American Tradition: A Comprehensive Introduction. (Chalice Press: St. Louis, MO, 2007). ISBN 978-0-8272-0820-9

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
25% Mid-term exam; this will be an in-class, bluebook essay exam.
25% 1-page position statements, each is a serial installment on final synthesis paper 25% Group Project via Internet, teams design a Religious Education event
25% Final Synthesis Paper

Course Title: Faith and culture for pastoral ministry:
Course Number: THST 673-1
Section Times/Days: Tuesday 4:30-7 pm
Instructor: Dr. Brett C. Hoover, CSP

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
In this course we explore how pastoral ministry and theology are shaped by the experience of different cultures in Southern California. We practice using key theoretical tools such as: 1) social scientific theories of culture, 2) contextual theological methodologies, 3) theologies of inculturation (and contemporary critiques of them), 4) intercultural communication theory, 5) theories of immigrant adaptation to U.S. society, and 6) the dynamics of intercultural interaction in situations of unequal power. The main thrust of the class is to develop a critical awareness of the importance of cultures (our own and those of others) in contemporary pastoral settings, facilitating a more just and effective pastoral ministry.

Student Learning Outcomes:
Students will have a basic knowledge of social scientific theories of culture and immigration adaptation. Students will have a basic knowledge of the contextual nature of theology. They will have a basic knowledge of inculturation, including being able to demonstrate it in practical use. Students will show that they have developed a critical consciousness of the importance of culture in pastoral ministry.

Pre-requisites:
THST 620, 630, or 660

Required Texts:
Vincent Donovan, Christianity Rediscovered, 25th anniversary edition (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 2003).
Gerard Arbuckle, Culture, Inculturation, and Theologians: A Postmodern Critique (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2010).
Alejandro Portés and Rubén Rumbaut, Immigrant America: A Portrait, 3rd edition (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006).

COURSE TITLE: Pastoral Leadership: Theory and Practice
COURSE NUMBER: THST 674
SECTION TIMES/DAYS: Tuesday 7:15 to 9:45 pm
INSTRUCTOR: Michael Horan

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
Leaders in parish ministries, Catholic schools, campus ministries and non-profit settings know that effective leadership is harder to explain than it is to recognize. This course is designed to help lay and ordained leaders in schools, churches and non-profit organizations to probe the questions: What is a leader and what makes for good leadership? We probe these questions by considering still others: How can leadership theories from business, education, or politics inform us as we hone leadership practices? Where do these theories fall short in addressing the particular dynamics of religious leadership? What theological and formational factors impact leadership styles in churches, schools and communities of faith? In addition, the course will examine selected issues that challenge leaders in pastoral settings, including but not limited to: conflict management, right use of money, authority and leadership, overcoming sexism and clericalism in the ministry workplace.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:
Identify, analyze and assess the coherence of theories of leadership
Apply these theories to pastoral settings through case studies
Employ leadership theory to propose improved practices in schools and ministry sites
Mutually correlate theories of leadership and theological understandings of ministry

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND
This course is open to all graduate students. It is the required course for the Pastoral Leadership Concentration in the M.A. in Pastoral Theology.

REQUIRED TEXTS
Allen, John.  The Future Church: Ten Trends are Revolutionizing the Catholic Church.  Doubleday Religion; 1st edition.  2009.
Carroll, Jackson W.   God’s Potters: Pastoral Leadership and the Shaping of Congregations. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2006.
Daloz Parks, Sharon.  Leadership Can be Taught:  A Bold Approach for a Complex World. Harvard Business Press, 2005.

 

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
Brief analysis papers and seminar leadership 35%
Mid term exam (Take home and in class portions) 30%
Final Paper and Oral presentation of paper 35%

COURSE No. & Section: THST 675
TIMES/DAYS: MONDAY, 7:15PM;TO 9:45PM
COURSE TITLE: SPIRITUAL FORMATION FOR PASTORAL MINISTRY
INSTRUCTOR: DR. WILKIE AU

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
Union with God, personal awareness, and pastoral sensitivity form the heart of effective ministry. This course will focus on cultivating a holistic spirituality capable of balancing self- possession and self-transcendence, contemplation and action, work and leisure, self-care and care of others. A variety of spiritual disciplines will be explored and experienced, with special attention given to developing one's own personal spiritual practice. The course will include both theoretical and experiential learning.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES:
Students will demonstrate an ability to reflect on their life and ministry experience and to articulate an understanding of their experience in light of the topics covered in the readings and class discussions.
Students will make explicit and evaluate their approach to Christian discernment, with specific notice of the history of grace and the history of temptation in their lives.
Students will formulate a way or rule of life that can foster spiritual vitality in both their personal and ministerial life.

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND:
For graduate students and ministers, ordained or lay. It is STRONGLY ENCOURAGED that those taking this course have at least two years of experience in some form of pastoral ministry.

REQUIRED TEXTS/REFERENCES:
Urgings of the Heart: A Spirituality of Integration by Wilkie Au and Noreen Cannon {Mahwah, New Jersey: Paulist Press, 1995}. ISBN 0-8091-3604-x
By Way of the Heart: Toward a Holistic Christian Spirituality by Wilkie Au (Mahwah, New Jersey: Paulist Press, 1989). ISBN 0-8091-3118-8
Discernment: The Art of Choosing Well by Pierre Wolff (Ligouri, Missouri: Triumph Books, An Imprint of Ligouri Publications, 1993). ISBN 0-89243-485-6
Comforting the Fearful: Listening Skills for Caregivers by Leroy Howe (Mahwah, New Jersey: Paulist Press, 2003) ISBN: 0-8091-4107-8
A Course Reader ( to be purchased at the first class)

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS:
1) Regular Attendance and Active Participation
2) 1-page Reflection Paper Weekly Based on Readings
3) 5-Page Final Integration Paper
4) Class Presentation of Integration Paper
5) Subject Matter Synthesis Paper (10-12 Pages)

Title: Contextual Education Seminar (Supervised Pastoral Field Education):
Course Number: THST 689-1
Section Times/Days: Wednesday, 7:15-9:30 pm
Instructor: Dr. Brett C. Hoover, CSP

COURSE DESCRIPTION:

Drawing upon an interdisciplinary framework, this contextual education seminar addresses ministerial leadership aimed at the whole person in the service of faith communities for the sake of God’s Reign. It offers foundational concepts and skills required for effectiveness in ministry that is contextual, collaborative, and intercultural. It seeks to engage students in theological reflection, ministry skill development, and supervised field education experiences in a dialogical classroom context that models effective collaborative ministry. It aims to enable students to weave together theological, ministerial, and educational insights and understandings. As present and future leaders in the church, students learn so that they may also be able to teach and train others in what they learn.

Student Learning Outcomes:
As a result of this course, students will be able to make use of practical theological method in theological reflection; to articulate with appropriate terminology the connections between their experiences of ministry and the theology they are learning; to articulate key contextual factors—environmental, cultural, psychological, spiritual and ecclesial—that impact particular ministry sites; to facilitate work and learning groups in the context of ministry; to identify and demonstrate improvement in the interpersonal and leadership skills necessary for effective ministry today in the contexts they will engage.

Pre-requisites:
THST 600 and THST 670.

Required Texts:
John Swinton and Harriet Mowat, Practical Theology and Qualitative Research (London: SCM Press, 2006).
Jeffrey H. Mahan, Barbara B. Troxell, and Carol J. Allen in Shared Wisdom: A Guide to Case Study Reflection in Ministry (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1993).
Mary Angela Shaughnessy Ministry and the Law (Mahwah NJ: Paulist Press, 1998).

COURSE TITLE: Directed Research Seminar
COURSE NUMBER AND SECTION: THST 696.01
SECTION TIME/DAYS: Tuesday, 7:15-9:45
INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Jonathan Rothchild

Course Description:
This graduate capstone course is open to students who have completed the Comprehensive Exam Seminar. Building on the research proposal crafted in that course, students will develop a Master’s level thesis through careful research and analysis, rigorous argumentation, and creative theological reflection. Students will drive the class in terms of presenting their own work, working constructively to assess their colleagues’ writing, and discussing the theological, ethical, pastoral, and cultural implications of their collective work. The instructor will facilitate class discussions and establish milestones for the progression of the thesis. The instructor will also work with the external reader of the thesis, who will be assigned in consultation with the student, instructor, and Graduate Director.

Student Learning Outcomes:
The purpose of the course is to help students:
-To understand the research skills and strategies necessary to write a successful thesis.
-To refine their writing skills and improve their ability to articulate an effective theological argument.
-To engage in critical conversations with their peers regarding complex theological ideas and their implications for the church, academy, and society.
-To value the modest, but important contribution that a thesis can make to wider theological discussions.

Prerequisites:
Comprehensive Exam Seminar

Required Texts:
Articles and other reading materials will be available through Blackboard or will be distributed in class.

Course Work:
Attendance/ Participation: 15%
Draft # 1 of thesis: 10%
Draft # 2 of thesis: 15%
Response to another student’s paper: 10%
Response to another student’s paper: 10%
Oral presentation of final version of thesis: 10%
Final version of thesis: 30%

Course Title: Integration Seminar: Faith and culture in the parishes
Course Number: THST 698-03
Section Times/Days: Tuesday 7:15-9:45 pm
Instructor: Dr. Brett C. Hoover, CSP

Course Description:
Multicultural settings evoke both unexpected graces and tensions, but both can be gifts. We ultimately aim toward humility in the presence of cultural differences and a critical awareness of our own cultural background. Using the experience of faith and culture in the parishes and Diocese of Orange as a starting point, this seminar uses case study methodology to help us develop practical skills for ministry across cultural boundaries—listening and communication, organizing appropriate parish structures, teaching and offering basic pastoral counseling and spiritual direction across cultural boundaries.

Student Learning Outcomes:
Students will be able to critically engage case studies on faith and culture in pastoral ministry, articulating a theologically literate and pastorally appropriate response. They will demonstrate a familiarity with basic listening, organizational, and advising skills in cross-cultural situations.

Pre-requisites:
None

Required Texts:
Carole Ganim, ed., Shaping Catholic Parishes: Pastoral Leaders in the 21st Century (Chicago: Loyola Press, 2008).
Charles R. Foster, Embracing Diversity: Leadership in Multicultural Congregations (Herndon, VA: Alban Institute, 1997). 

400 Level THST Courses
Please note: In order to take a 400 Level THST for course credit, instructor and department approval are required.

 

Course Number: THST 430
Course Title: Christology
Term: Spring 2012;M 4:30-7:00
Instructor: Thomas P. Rausch, S.J.
Office: University Hall 3722: tel 310-338-2931

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
An historical and systematic investigation of the Christian understanding of Jesus Christ and his significance. Topics include the historical Jesus, the development of the Christology of the New Testament and the early councils in the context of contemporary christological issues. Special emphases will include recovering the historical Jesus, soteriology, and Christology in the context of religious pluralism.

COURSE FORMAT:
The course will be a seminar. It will involve lectures by the instructor, classroom analysis and discussion of the assigned readings, and a class presentation by each student of his or her research paper. Each student's contribution to the seminar process through participation in the seminar and his or her seminar presentation will be an important factor in determining the final grade. There will be a midterm exam and a final paper.

REQUIRED TEXTS:
Haight, Roger, The Future of Christology
Johnson, Elizabeth. Consider Jesus: Waves of Renewal in Christology
Rausch, Thomas P. Who Is Jesus? An Introduction to Christology
Some articles will be assigned

Recommended:
Haight, Roger. Jesus: Symbol of God
Schillebeeckx, Edward. Jesus: An Experiment in Christology
Tilley, Terrence, The Disciples’ Jesus: Christology as Reconciling Practice

PREREQUISITES:
Majors and minors with 0ne 100 level course and one 300 level course; others permission of instructor.

COURSE TITLE: INTO THE DESERT
COURSE NUMBER: ENGL 498, THST 498
SECTION TIMES/DAYS: W 4:30-7
INSTRUCTOR: DOUGLAS BURTON-CHRISTIE, RUBEN MARTINEZ

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
This interdisciplinary (English and Theological Studies) course aims to encourage students to reflect on the meaning of the desert as it has been conceived in the literatures of ancient Christian monasticism, as well as in the art, literature and politics of the American West and Borderlands. We mean to explore the varied meanings of the desert in these diverse historical and cultural moments and ask what it means not just to imagine but also inhabit the desert today. These inquiries have real implications for what it means to inhabit the world with some sense of meaning and purpose—both in the profound sense of individual spiritual development as well as in the pursuit of social justice. Into the Desert seeks to entwine these threads through close readings across genres as well as through embodied experience: a key class activity is a field trip into the Mojave desert.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
Knowledge of early Christian literatures of the desert and their social-historical context.
Knowledge of representations of the deserts of the American Southwest and Borderlands and the contemporary critical models that engage them.
Knowledge of spiritual and contemplative traditions specific to the desert.
Embodied experience of the desert through field trip to the Mojave.
Integrative vision of the desert and its importance as both a material and spiritual site.

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND
English 110 and upper division standing.

REQUIRED TEXTS
Bowles, Paul. The Sheltering Sky
Austin, Mary. The Land of Little Rain
Castillo, Ana. The Guardians

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
Student writing will include a weekly précis on class readings, and a long essay that mixes critical and self-reflexive modes. There will also be collective small group presentations that will involve original research. Mandatory participation in class field trip (which may include an overnight stay).

This course fulfills the following English Major requirement:

_____Lower Division/Pre-Major Requirement

_____Theory Course ___X__400/500-level Writing

_____Pre-1800 Lit. _____Writing Elective

_____Post-1800 Lit. _____Pre-Journalism Curriculum

___X__Comparative/Cultural Lit. or Writing _____Shakespeare

____X_Lit. Elective _____American Literature Survey

This course fulfills the following Theological Studies Major requirement:
Area C Theological Studies Majors requirement.

 


COURSE TITLE: Sacraments and Sacramentality
COURSE NUMBER: THST 498
SECTION TIMES/DAYS: Tuesday 4:30-7:00 p.m.
INSTRUCTOR: Nicholas Denysenko, Ph.D. 

COURSE DESCRIPTION/PRINCIPAL TOPICS
Christians who participate in liturgical worship often have a meaningful and complex experience of the divine. The Church has traditionally titled these events “sacraments,” or mysteries, and has even defined and categorized seven specific sacraments. The liturgical celebration of sacraments involves the familiar elements of the world, such as water, bread, wine, and oil, and also habitual human actions and gestures, such as walking in order (procession), kneeling, embracing and kissing, prostrating, turning, and using verbal forms of communication. Explaining the meaning of such activity in the context of sacramental celebration constitutes sacramentality. In this course, studying sacramentality is not limited to defining theology about the sacraments, but incorporates a study of how sacramental celebration articulates a theology of the world or universal order (cosmos), and how sacraments express God’s theological vision for humanity.
This course closely examines sacraments in their liturgical context to explicate sacramentality as experienced by the assembled liturgical community. Students will learn methods for studying and articulating sacramental theology, study the historical contexts for the development of sacramental theology, and learn how traditional sacramental celebration and theology informs contemporary practice.

STUDENT LEARNING OUTCOMES
Students will learn methods for study and research in liturgical and sacramental theology.
Students will encounter and discuss the nature and function of symbols, art, and sacred space.
Students will study sacramental structures and articulate their theology in written and verbal communication
Students will progressively refine a working definition of sacramentality by carefully studying sacraments, sacramental structures, and sacramental celebration by the assembly.Students will study the anthropological and sociological dimensions of sacramental celebration.

PREREQUISITES/RECOMMENDED BACKGROUND
None

REQUIRED TEXTS
Allen Bouley, ed. The Catholic Rites Today: Abridged Texts for Students
Eds. Geoffrey Rowell and Christine Hall, The Gestures of God: Explorations in Sacramentality
Edward Yarnold, The Awe-Inspiring Rites of Initiation

COURSE WORK/EXPECTATIONS
Regular attendance is required.
Students are required to prepare readings before class for discussion.
Active participation in and contribution to discussion in class and in online discussion board as needed
Four analysis papers, approximately 5 pages each
Seminar research paper (15 pages) and presentation to class on selected topic