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Theology Course Descriptions

THE 101  Introduction to Christian Theology

3 credits

An introduction to Christian theology understood as the critical and reflective study of God's revelation through the person, life, and teaching of Jesus Christ and of the implications of this revelation. Proceeding from the Catholic intellectual tradition and incorporating perspectives of other Christian traditions, this study aims to present theology as a striving for the harmony of faith and reason. Through critical study and reflection, students are introduced to specific concepts, terminology, and methodologies needed to participate well in on-going theological dialogue. Students have the opportunity to apply and reflect on their knowledge in written work, presentations, service-learning, community service, and/or retreat experiences.

 THE 204   Special Topics

1-3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

A treatment of particular theological and/or biblical questions or themes chosen because of their special relevance or student interest.

 THE 205   Peacemaking: Multicultural,Interfaith Dimensions

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

An introduction to the basic philosophical, religious, spiritual and practical dimensions of peacemaking, including the theories of peacemaking, the role of various religious traditions in the understanding and development of peace, and the skills needed to foster peace on the personal, interpersonal, and systemic (global) levels. The course requires a service-learning experience. Depending on the service-learning experience, an additional expense may be required.

 THE 210   Understanding the Scriptures

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

A basic introduction to reading and understanding the Bible. The course includes an overview of relevant historical backgrounds, an explanation and application of biblical methodologies, both traditional and contemporary, and an investigation of important biblical themes. Attention is given to the literary, historical, and theological significance and meaning of key scriptural texts.

THE 214  Religious Pluralism

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

What is religious pluralism? How is it understood within the world in general and in the

United States in particular? Why does religious pluralism exist? How is it different from religious diversity? This course looks carefully at these questions in light of 21st century experience. The course further looks at how students can commit themselves to forming relationships with and understanding of people who practice different religious traditions. The course is a balance of theory and praxis.

THE 215   The Religious Imagination: Theology and the Arts

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

An analysis of and reflection on the theological and spiritual dimensions of the imagination, the arts and of specific works of art. The course focuses on one or several specific art forms, which can include film, television, literature, music, theatre, performance art, and two- and three-dimensional art (e.g., drawing, painting and sculpture).

 THE 216 History in Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

An introduction to the significance of the historical study of the Christian tradition. Major ideas, figures, and movements are viewed through the perspective both of historical-critical methods and of the Christian tradition.

THE 218  World Religions

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

After examining the definition of religion, this course explores the beliefs, moral imperatives, sacred books, and prayer and worship practices of major world religions.

THE 220  Theology of Death

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

A theological exploration of attitudes and perspectives on suffering, death, and resurrection. While the main exploratory focus in this course will be from the Catholic Christian perspective, attention will also be given to cross-cultural conceptions of the afterlife and/or ways of attaining ultimate meaning in the context of death. Specific attention will be given to the experience of terminal illness, the experience of loss and strategies for dealing with loss, ethical issues related to the process of dying in a technological age, suicide and suicide prevention, and Eastern and Western religious views of life after death.

THE 221  Theology of Love

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

A critical and reflective study of God's role in a relationship with love as it is experienced in marriage, celibacy, sexual encounter, prayer, service to others, ecstatic intellectual experience, worship, and suffering. The basis for this study will be traditional Christian writings, scriptural analysis, and contemporary psychological, sociological, historical, and biological research.

THE 225   Theology of Leadership

3 credits

(Also LDR 225)

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

Through a variety of resources students use theological reflection to explore their personal spirituality, sense of vocation, and approaches to leadership within the context of their own and other belief systems. Models of leadership are drawn from areas of moral theology and transformational servant leadership.

 THE 230  Introduction to Pastoral Ministry

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An introduction to the theological and biblical foundations of the call to minister to the people of God's Kingdom, the practical dimensions of Christian pastoral ministry, and a contemporary spirituality for ministry through the practice of theological reflection.  The mission and ministry of Jesus, the Kingdom of God, the models of church, the historical development of Christian ministry, the contemporary understanding of ministry, and the future direction of church ministries are among the key topics.

THE 303   Topics in Biblical Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

An intensive study of one or several major books or themes of the Bible. Attention is given to a critical examination of significant scriptural texts. The books or themes are viewed through both traditional interpretations and recent critical scholarship.

THE 306  Topics in Catholic Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

A treatment of particular theological questions or themes in Catholic theology chosen because of special relevance or student interest. Course resources will regularly include primary sources from Catholic theologians and church documents.

THE 307  Topics in the History of Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An intensive study of a particular aspect of the history of theology (e.g. a topic, a figure, a phenomenon, or an historical period or event). Attention is given to the use of critical examination of significant primary texts as an historical and theological source.

THE 309  Topics in Contemporary Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An intensive study of a particular aspect or manifestation of contemporary theology (for example, a topic, a figure, a phenomenon, or an event).  Attention is given to exploring the meaning and significance of the phenomenon in light of the Christian and Catholic tradition, as well as of contemporary culture.

THE 310  Women and Religion

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

An exploration of the role of women in religion from various points of view. A broad historical overview of perspectives will be examined with particular emphasis on the contemporary context. The course will examine the role of women in ancient cultures, the shift to patriarchy, the early Judaeo-Christian tradition, women's representation in myth, the role of women in the shaping of religious traditions, and contemporary issues.

 THE 327 Vatican II

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

A critical and reflective examination of the significance of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), commonly referred to as Vatican II, in the overall history of the church. It looks at the historical context of the council, significant leaders and theologians, major themes, and final documents. The course further explores how the events of Vatican II impact the church and world today, with special attention given to students' chosen major(s) as a way to continue the ongoing spirit of Vatican II. The students will study the events of Vatican II through a hermeneutics of reception (hermeneutics of authors, texts, and receivers) and determine how Vatican II can be meaningful to people today.

THE 333  Theological Investigations I

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An exploration and examination of foundational Christian doctrines associated with revelation and faith, God (Trinity), creation, Jesus Christ (Christology), and salvation (soteriology). Students will study core doctrinal beliefs and practices in light of their scriptural, historical, and theological foundations, and ponder the question: how might these foundations inform our contemporary understanding and practical application of Christian doctrines and belief?

THE 334  Theological Investigations II

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An exploration and examination of foundational Christian doctrines associated with church (ecclesiology), sin and grace, the saints and Mary, sacraments, and the end of life and time (eschatology). Students will study core doctrinal beliefs and practices in light of their scriptural, historical, and theological foundations, and ponder the question: how might these foundations inform our contemporary understanding and practical application of Christian doctrines and belief?

THE 340  Moral Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An examination and consideration of the moral implications of faith. Moral theology understands the moral life as a response to the love and compassion of God revealed in Jesus Christ. Together students will explore the nature of the good, the nature of the human person, criteria for making Christian moral decisions, contributions of church-related documents, and specific moral issues that confront Christians living in the contemporary world.

THE 345  Catholic Social Teaching

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An examination of the historical, biblical, and theoretical foundations of Catholic social teaching and the application of its principles to modern societal, political, and economic issues, including the practice of making moral decisions in light of Catholic social teaching principles. This is a service-learning course.

THE 350 Christian Spiritual Traditions

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An exploration of various spiritual, meditative, and service-oriented traditions within Western and Eastern Christianity. Significant contributions from individuals and religious communities such as the Desert Fathers and Mothers, St. Benedict, St. Theresa of Avila, St. Ignatius of Loyola, St. Francis of Assisi, St. Dominic, the Congregation of St. Agnes, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Missionary Sisters of Charity will be explored. This is a service learning course.

THE 360  Faith Development

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An examination of various theoretical understandings of faith development and moral development, as well as an exploration of how these theories are used in church-related ministerial and catechetical settings in light of modern cultural influences. The course content flows from the Judaeo-Christian understanding of the nature of the human, as a child of God and made in the image of God.

THE 365  Child and Youth Ministry

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An overview of child and youth ministry that examines the theoretical foundations of a ministry to children and adolescents and the implementation of such a ministry, including analysis of the theological, cultural, psychological, and sociological understandings of the world of children and youth. The course also explores the practical aspects of developing a comprehensive child and youth ministry program in various settings. This is service-learning course.

THE 366  Adult and Family Ministry

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

An overview of adult and family ministry that examines the theoretical foundations of a ministry to adults-with or without families-and the practical implementation of a ministry to adults and families through an analysis of the theological, cultural, psychological, and sociological realities that influence adult and family life in today's world. The course also explores the practical aspects of developing a comprehensive adult and family ministry program. This is a service-learning course.

THE 370  Worship and Service

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

A critical and reflective study of the relationship between worship in and service to the Christian community, as well as the theological and practical dimensions of that relationship. This course also examines such topics as the dynamics of the sacramental life; ministering to adults, families, children, youth, and young adults through the sacraments and Christian service in the community; and the application of Catholic social teaching in ministry with children, youth, and adults. This is a service-learning course.

 THE 397  Internship

1-3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

Students earn academic credit for internship work experiences as they test career choices, improve work skills, and establish professional contacts. This experience ultimately serves to directly tie students' academic coursework to non-academic professional experiences.

 THE 404  Special Topics

1-3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

A treatment of particular theological and/or biblical questions chosen because of special relevance or student interest.

 THE 414  Independent Study     

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102 and permission

A course designed by the student with an instructor's guidance to allow students of superior ability to pursue a topic of interest not available through regular courses.

 THE 420  Science, Technology, and Theology

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

Since the late medieval period in Western culture, science and its tool-making partner, technology, have been considered separate from theology. We will explore this separation and look at the theological questions underlying the modern understanding of science and technology. We will also investigate the new awareness of the interrelatedness of science and theology.

THE 426  Theology of the Human Person

3 credits

Prerequisite:THE 100 or 101 or 102

Using the theological anthropology of Karl Rahner and other contemporary theological perspectives as a lens and guide, this course will explore contemporary theological perspectives on how Jesus' life, death, and resurrection shape and inform the Christian understanding of the human person. Some questions to be considered may include the following: What does it mean to be human? Does being created in the image of God mean we are born with a purpose and destiny? Is human life inherently sacred? Are we oriented toward communion with God and others? How has sin impacted human freedom and our relationship to creation? What can the Christian beliefs of grace, salvation, and hope say to us during times of suffering, war, and ecological crisis?

THE 450   Theological Research

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102 and permission

(Theology major or minor)

This course is designed for students who plan on attending graduate school following their graduation from Marian University. In this seminar class, students explore both humanistic and social science research methodologies as they pertain to religious education.  Students complete an extensive research project throughout the semester that utilizes a methodology presented in class.

THE 495   Senior Seminar

3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102 and permission

(Theology major or minor)

A seminar and capstone course for theology minors and majors that will provide an opportunity to integrate one's theological studies and gained perspectives into a summative senior research paper. Students will also produce a portfolio that demonstrates the development of their theological understanding and reflection.

THE 497   Internship

1-3 credits

Prerequisite: THE 100 or 101 or 102

Students earn academic credit for internship work experiences as they test career choices, improve work skills, and establish professional contacts. This experience ultimately serves to directly tie students' academic coursework to non-academic professional experiences.

Computer

Fun Fact

There are 61 computers available in the library for students to use (Source: Cardinal Meyer Library).

Campus Info

Marian University - Main Campus
45 S. National Ave.
Fond du Lac, WI 54935-4699

CALL: 1-800-2-MARIAN (1-800-262-7426)
EMAIL: admission@marianuniversity.edu  

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