Course Offerings

The location of a course is designated below by one of four geographic areas, indicating the location from which the live course is taught. Students who are within commuting distance to that location are encouraged to attend class in person. All Catholic theology courses online can be accessed synchronously for those unable to attend in person or not in commuting distance. Live course times are listed in Eastern Standard Time (EST). Further details on distance learning can be found here.

Spring 2023 Courses

January 9th - April 28th

(Note: our add/drop deadline is February 3rd)

ALB (Albany Campus) | BUF (Buffalo Campus) | ROC (Rochester Campus)

A/B451: What is Scripture Saying? Explorations in Patristic and Medieval Exegesis (Kasey Kimball, Ph.D. Cand.)

What does it mean to read Scripture well? Prior to becoming Pope Benedict XVI, Cardinal Ratzinger suggested that it involves integrating the best of pre-Modern ('Method A') and Modern ('Method B') approaches into a new 'Method C'. In this class, we will take our cue from this 'Method C' proposal and turn to the Church's past, examining how different Patristic (Origen and St. Augustine) and Medieval (the Victorines and St. Thomas Aquinas) interpreters of Scripture understood and went about their task, with particular attention to the meaning and function of the various senses of the text. We will then consider how their methods, combined with more contemporary methods, might help us be more faithful readers and interpreters of Scripture today.

3 credits | Online

Thursdays, 6 - 8pm EST, January 12th, January 19th, January 26th, February 2nd, February 9th, February 16th, February 23rd, March 2nd, March 9th, March 16th, March 23rd, March 30th, April 13th, April 20th, April 27th


A203: New Testament (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

New Testament introduces students to the literature, history, and theology of the New Testament. It focuses on key books of the New Testament with a primary focus on Jesus of Nazareth, the four canonical gospels, and the development of early Christianity.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Tuesday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 10th, January 24th, February 7th, February 21st, March 7th, March 21st, April 18th, April 11th

B/C310: Catholic Social Teaching (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

This course examines the development of Catholic Social Teaching from an historical and theological perspective. Students will become familiar with the numerous social documents of the Church, beginning with Rerum Novarum. The content and implications of these documents will be discussed and evaluated. The life and work of Dorothy Day and other key figures in the area of Catholic social teaching will be offered as examples of how we can integrate social teaching into ministries and spirituality.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Tuesday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 17th, January 31st, February 14th, February 28th, March 14th, March 28th, April 11th, April 25th

NEW! B/C385: Divine Providence: The Plan of God and the Meaning of History (Matthew Kuhner, Ph.D.)

In The Dialogue, Catherine of Siena writes: "everything comes from love, all is ordained for the salvation of man, God does nothing without this goal in mind" (paragraph 138). What does it mean that everything comes from love and is ordained for our salvation? How can we recognize and understand the divine logos, the divine wisdom, that directs and orders history and our own lives? Will God's plan truly "unite all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth" (Eph 1:10)? This course will contemplate the mystery of divine providence through a study of Scripture, the Magisterium, the saints, theologians across the ages, and Doctors of the Church. The above questions will frame our inquiry, and our attempted answers will require extensive conversations on the nature of creation, the dynamic of redemption, the meaning of time and history, and the dramatic relationship between divine and human freedom.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Wednesday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 18th, February 1st, February 15th, March 1st, March 15th, March 29th, April 19th

B301: The Gift of Meaning: The History of the Church (Siobhan Latar S.T.L.)

“All those in history who have really done anything with the future have had their eyes fixed upon the past” (G.K. Chesterton). This course will provide a survey of Church history, tracking the Church of God across time and space from Pentecost to our present day. The course content will privilege a theological approach to history: it will investigate the historical unfolding of the Church’s doctrines, charisms, and spiritualities, and will assess the temporal development of the institutional Church. The investigations undertaken will be accompanied by a determined effort to learn from history for the sake of the present.

3 credits | Online

Every other Wednesday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 18th, February 1st, February 15th, March 1st, March 15th, March 29th, April 19th, April 26th


C/D203: The Drama of Life in Christ: Action, Contemplation, Communion (Catechism 3 and 4) (Heather Hughes Huff, M.A.)

In his Letter to the Philippians, St. Paul boldly proclaims: “to live is Christ” (1:21). What does it mean to live life in Christ and for Christ, Who is “the way, the truth, and the life” (Jn 14:6)? This course provides an extended meditation upon the demands of life in Christ through an exploration of: (a) the Christian understanding and realization of the moral life as guided by Part Three of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (“Life in Christ” §§1691-2557), and (b) the practice, life, and purpose of Christian prayer as guided by Part Four of the Catechism (“Christian Prayer” §§2558-2865).

3 credits | ALB and Online

Every other Thursday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 12th, January 26th, February 9th, February 23rd, March 9th, March 23rd, April 20th, April 27th


C/D334: Catholic Bioethics at the End of Life (Peter Colosi, Ph.D.)

This course examines a range of issues and controversies, from the determination of death itself, to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide, advance directives, hospice and palliative care options, organ donation, extra/ordinary care, and artificial nutrition and hydration. Topics are grounded in a broader discussion of Church views on suffering and death. Additional cutting-edge bioethical issues such as gender dysphoria, artificial wombs, CRISPR gene editing, and COVID-related ethics are considered, alongside classic landmark ethical cases and helpful narratives from the rich history of Catholic health care. Secular bioethical frameworks and arguments are examined. Issues are considered in a highly practical light, with emphasis given to real-world applications in pastoral, academic, and health care settings.

3 credits | Online

Tuesdays, 6:30 - 8:30pm EST, January 10th, January 17th, January 24th, January 31st, February 7th, February 14th, February 21st, February 28th, March 7th, March 14th, March 21st, March 28th, April 11th, April 18th, April 25th

C/D398: Catechesis and the New Evangelization: Content, Method, and Challenges (Matthew Kuhner, Ph.D.)

In Catechesi Tradende, Pope St. John Paul II contends that “the definitive aim of catechesis is to put people not only in touch but in communion, in intimacy, with Jesus Christ...” (§5). Taking this statement as a point of departure, this course explores the nature, content, and method of catechesis. It does so in the context of the call for a New Evangelization, which proposes a renewed emphasis on the Church’s missionary nature and the mission-character of discipleship itself. After addressing the history of catechesis and its sources in Scripture and Tradition, the course will focus upon the Church’s penetrating reflection on catechesis in the 20th and 21st centuries. Attention will be given to present-day challenges, as well as recent catechetical models which attempt to address these challenges. The general aim of the course is to answer two fundamental questions: (1) “what is catechesis?” and (2) “how can catechesis bear fruit in our age?

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Wednesday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 11th, January 25th, February 8th, February 22nd, March 8th, March 22nd, April 12th, April April 12th, April 26th

C215: Introduction to Theological Studies (Lisa Lickona, S.T.L.)

This course orients students to the various aspects of Catholic theological studies and the way Catholic theology functions in the faith community. Key issues such as faith, revelation, Scripture, tradition, the Magisterium, and theological method are explored with an eye to how they are integrated into the entire discipline of theology. The course aims at helping to develop a framework in which to understand how one engages in theological reflection. Specific theological terms will be defined and discussed. (Formerly "Orientation to Theological Studies").

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Wednesday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 18th, February 1st, February 15th, March 1st, March 15th, March 29th, April 12th, April 26th

NEW! C216: Grace, Nature, and Christian Anthropology (Lisa Lickona, S.T.L.)

This course will examine Christian Anthropology through the lens of the relationship between nature and grace. Main themes considered include predestination (of Jesus Christ, and of humanity in Jesus Christ), human nature in relation to grace, the meaning of the person, original sin, and justification.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Thursday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 12th, January 26th, February 9th, February 23rd, March 9th, March 23rd, April 13th, April 20th


C228: Ecclesiology and the Theology of Ministry (Rev. Benjamin Roberts, D.Min.)

A historical and theological overview of the Christian understanding of ecclesiology and ministry, with the Second Vatican Council as a primary point of reference. Topics include: the foundations of ecclesiology and ministry in the New Testament, the expressions of ecclesiology and ministry in the history of the Church, Apostolic succession, the nature of and relationship between the hierarchy and the laity, the local and the universal Church, and the Church and the world. Ecumenical engagement will also be addressed through the course. (Formerly "Theology of Church and Ministry").

3 credits | Online

Every other Monday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 9th, January 23rd, February 6th, February 20th, March 6th, March 13th, April 3rd, April 17th


CP605: Beyond Deception: Logic and the Freedom of the Mind (Stephen Loughlin, Ph.D.)

An examination of the three activities that define reason (Understanding, Judgment, and Discursive Reasoning), and the development and practice of the techniques that perfect them (definition, the judgment of truth and falsity, the manipulation of propositions, and the formation of a sound argument). This course considers the defects that commonly affect sound reasoning (fallacies), the distinction between sound and cogent reasoning (deductive vs. inductive reasoning) and the criteria that govern the difference between the two, and lastly what constitutes Normative Persuasion Dialogue and how such is to be distinguished from other speech acts.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Wednesdays, 6 - 9pm EST, January 11th, January 18th, January 25th, February 1st, February 8th, February 15th, February 22nd, March 1st, March 8th, March 15th, March 22nd, March 29th, April 12th, April 19th, April 26th


CP612: History of Philosophy: Medieval (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

A survey course beginning with St. Augustine, through the rise of Scholasticism, and to its end. Emphasis is placed upon the thought of St. Augustine, Boethius, St. Anselm, St. Bonaventure, St. Thomas Aquinas, John Duns Scotus, and William of Ockham. The relations between faith and reason, and metaphysical, anthropological, and ethical teachings will be emphasized as they develop the thought received from the ancient Greek philosophers and prepare the way for the rise of modern philosophy.

3 credits | ALB and Online

Every other Tuesday, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, January 10th, January 24th, February 7th, February 21st, March 7th, March 21st, April 18th, April 25th


CP671: Classic Texts in Catholic Philosophy (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

This course introduces students to a close reading of classic works from the Catholic philosophical tradition. For this reason, the works that may be studied include texts from the ancient, medieval, modern, and contemporary age. According to the model presented in Fides et Ratio by St. Pope John Paul II, “faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth.” The classics of philosophy selected for this course are examples of the attitude described in the encyclical letter, either because they present an understanding of reason that is open to faith, or because they present in an exemplary way the modality in which philosophical reason works once informed by faith. This course is the capstone course for the Master of Arts in Catholic Philosophy.

3 credits | ALB and Online

Every other Thursday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 19th, February 2nd, February 16th, March 2nd, March 16th, March 30th, April 13th, April 27th

D207: Canon Law and Ministerial Leadership (Rev. Peter Mottola, J.C.L.)

An introduction to Canon Law, especially as applicable to parish ministry. A particular focus will be given to the canon law of marriage. In addition to a brief summary of the history and development of Canon Law, and a brief survey of the structure of the Roman Curia, an overview will be given according to the organization of the 1983 Code of Canon Law:
I. General Norms (canons 1–203)
II. The People of God (canons 204–755)
III. The Teaching Function of the Church (canons 756–833)
IV. The Sanctifying Function of the Church (canons 834–1258)
V. The Temporal Goods of the Church (canons 1259–1310)
VI. Sanctions in the Church (canons 1311–1399)
VII. Processes (canons 1400–1752)

3 credits | ROC and Online

Every other Monday, 6 - 9pm EST, January 9th, January 23rd, February 6th, February 20th, March 6th, March 20th, April 3rd, April 17th

Fall 2022 Courses

August 24th - December 16th

(Note: our add/drop deadline is September 23rd)

ALB (Albany Campus) | BUF (Buffalo Campus) | ROC (Rochester Campus)

A202: Old Testament (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

Introduction to the Old Testament introduces exegetical methodology and theology of the Old Testament. Students will consider the fruits and the assumptions of exegesis, using and examining its methodologies both as helpful tools and as products of a particular era. Hebrew poetry and narrative, ritual and ethical instruction, prophecy, historiography, and novella will be analyzed as literature, and students will also examine the development of traditions within the texts of the canon. Since Sacred Scripture is double-authored, by both man and God, and interpreted in the context of the Catholic Church, A202 will also emphasize the theology of the Old Testament, with a special focus on the People of God, and will read spiritual readings of the Old Testament from the Church Fathers to present.

3 credits | Every other Tuesday, 8/30, 9/13, 9/27, 10/11, 10/25, 11/8, 11/22, 12/6 | 6 - 9pm EST | BUF and Online


B/C380: Source and Summit: Reflecting on the Eucharist at the Heart of the Church (Siobhan Latar, S.T.D.)

Identified by the Second Vatican Council as the "Source and Summit" of the Christian life, this course will reflect on the nature and significance of the Eucharist in the life of the Church. Combining both an historical and thematic approach, we will examine the developing understanding of the sacrament of the Eucharist through time, as well as theological themes of Eucharistic spirituality, including: the significance of the Eucharist to Ecclesiology, the Eucharist and the Marian and Petrine dimensions of the Church, the understanding of the three-fold nature of the Body of Christ, the Eucharist as sacrament, etc. We will rely on the reflections of the Fathers, the Councils, recent papal encyclicals, among other texts.

3 credits | Thursdays, 9/1, 9/8, 9/15, 9/22, 9/29, 10/6, 10/13, 10/20, 10/27, 11/3, 11/10, 11/17, 12/1, 12/8, 12/15 | 6 - 9pm EST | Online



C/D202: The Revelation of God: Doctrine, Liturgy, and Sacraments (Catechism 1 and 2)

This course introduces us to those teachings that are central to the Catholic Faith as guided by Part One of the Catechism of the Catholic Church: “The Profession of Faith” §§1-1065, and to the liturgical practices and sacraments of the Catholic Faith as guided by Part Two of the Catechism of the Catholic Church: “The Celebration of the Christian Mystery” §§1066-1690.

3 credits | Every other Thursday, 9/1, 9/15, 9/29, 10/13, 10/27, 11/10, 12/1, 12/15 | 6 - 9pm EST | Online



C/D325: Vatican II as a Pastoral Council: The Memory That Generates the Future (Daniel Drain, Ph.D. [Cand.])

Pope St. John Paul II said that the Second Vatican Council was “the great grace bestowed on the Church in the twentieth century . . . [and] a sure compass by which to take our bearings in the century now beginning” (Novo Millennio Ineuente, 57). This course aims, first, to survey the breadth and plumb the depths of the teachings of Vatican II, in particular through a thorough reading of its four primary Constitutions (Dei Verbum; Lumen Gentium; Sacrosanctum Concilium; and Gaudium et Spes) in order to better appreciate - and thereby receive anew - that “great grace.”

The second fundamental aim of this course is to understand the uniqueness of the Second Vatican Council in terms of the “pastoral.” Relatively unique among all of the twenty preceding Ecumenical Councils of the Church, Vatican II was not convened to combat one particular heresy, or address an isolated controversy or claimant to teaching authority. Neither was it merely “pastoral” (i.e., not doctrinal, and therefore subject to error and not binding). Vatican II’s chief aim, according to its convener, Pope St. John XXIII, was for the Church to “reaffirm that teaching authority of hers which never fails . . . that the sacred heritage of Christian truth be safeguarded and expounded with greater efficacy” (Opening Address to the Council, 11 October 1962). To understand the sense in which the Council itself sees and implements this particular end in its Constitutions is to arrive at a concept of the “pastoral” which has the vitality, virility, and vivacity to thwart the lamentable divide in present ecclesial discourse between alternative hermeneutics of continuity or rupture, instead arriving at a hermeneutic of reform in continuity.

3 credits | Mondays, 8/29, 9/12, 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 10/17, 10/24, 10/31, 11/7, 11/14, 11/21, 11/28, 12/5, 12/12 | 6:30 - 8:30pm EST | ROC and Online


C/D333: Catholic Bioethics at the Beginning of Life (Jean Baric Parker, D. Bioethics)

Catholic Bioethics at its core is about guiding us towards making well-considered moral decisions in our everyday life that will ultimately lead us to the greatest possible happiness, as exemplified by a life that best glorifies and honors God. This course will describe foundational Catholic principles which have historically provided clarity and rationality to Church moral teaching and which continue to be relevant in today’s complex bioethical climate. Issues to be considered include abortion, in vitro fertilization, contraception, surrogate pregnancy, organ donation, stem cell research, gene editing, gender dysphoria, COVID-19 issues, and physician-assisted suicide. Catholic and secular bioethical ideologies will be compared. End-of-life directives (MOLST, POLST, Living Wills, etc.), will be analyzed in light of Catholic teaching. The Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (ERDs) will be examined. Discussion will touch upon Theology of the Body doctrine, natural law, the role of conscience, human suffering, and cooperating with evil. This course will benefit health care professionals, clergy, chaplains, life science researchers, ethics and human subjects committee members, counselors, and those who are interested in learning more about applying Catholic bioethical principles to real-life situations.

3 credits | Tuesdays, 8/30, 9/6, 9/13, 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/22, 11/29, 12/6, 12/13 | 6:30 - 8:30pm EST | ROC and Online


C217: Fundamental Moral Theology (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

This course introduces the fields of moral theology and Catholic Social Thought. Students will contemplate the purpose of moral theology and Catholic Social Thought in the life of the Church, their methods, and the problems they address. Topics will include sin and conversion, vice and virtue, methods of moral decision making, and the development and practice of Catholic Social Thought. (Formerly "Moral and Social Teachings")

3 credits | Every other Tuesday, 9/6, 9/20, 10/4, 10/18, 11/1, 11/15, 11/29, 12/13 | 6 - 9pm EST | ROC and Online


C226: Liturgical and Sacramental Theology (Rev. Peter Van Lieshout, S.T.L.)

An historical, anthropological and theological investigation of Christian worship and sacrament with special attention to the Roman Catholic Sacraments of baptism and Eucharist; historical overview of liturgical practices, texts, and theology from Jewish and scriptural origins to the 20th-century Vatican II reforms; basic principles of liturgical and sacramental theology; and groundwork for interpreting liturgical documents and ritual texts from pastoral practice, multi/inter-cultural concerns, and ecumenical considerations. (Formerly "Worship and Sacraments").

3 credits | Every other Monday, 8/29, 9/12, 9/26, 10/10, 10/24, 11/7, 11/21, 12/5 | 6:00 – 9:15pm EST | ROC and Online


C228: Ecclesiology and the Theology of Ministry (Carmina Chapp, Ph.D.)

A historical and theological overview of the Christian understanding of ecclesiology and ministry, with the Second Vatican Council as a primary point of reference. Topics include: the foundations of ecclesiology and ministry in the New Testament, the expressions of ecclesiology and ministry in the history of the Church, Apostolic succession, the nature of and relationship between the hierarchy and the laity, the local and the universal Church, and the Church and the world. Ecumenical engagement will also be addressed through the course. (Formerly "Theology of Church and Ministry").

3 credits | Every other Tuesday, 8/30, 9/13, 9/27, 10/11, 10/25, 11/8, 11/22, 12/6 | 6 - 9pm EST | Online


C302: Christology and Trinitarian Theology (Rev. Anthony Barratt, S.T.L., Ph.D.)

This course examines and explores the nature of the Christian God as unity and Trinity. It focuses on God’s reality as creator, as redeemer in the person of Jesus who we proclaim the Christ, and as unifier and advocate in the person of the Spirit. Since the very nature of God implies “communion” the social implications of Trinity are a focal point for the course. The work of various theologians will be explored and there will be a focus on the early Ecumenical Councils of the Church. (Formerly "Theology of the Trinity").

3 credits | Every other Monday, 8/29, 9/19, 10/3, 10/17, 10/31, 11/14, 11/28, 12/12 | 6-9pm EST | ALB and Online


CP601: Introduction to Catholic Philosophy (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

This course centers the student upon the discipline of philosophy as it has been developed and practiced within the Catholic Intellectual Tradition. The methods particular to philosophical investigation will be examined as the philosopher seeks to articulate the nature of wisdom, how it can be attained, and especially incorporated into the entirety of one’s life. The student will understand the differences between philosophy, the sciences, and theology, as well as their respective complementarities, with a focus upon the supportive and illuminative role that philosophy plays in theological education.

3 credits | Every other Tuesday, 8/30, 9/13, 9/27, 10/11, 10/25, 11/8, 11/22, 12/6 | 6 - 9pm EST | ALB and Online


CP611: Our Search for Meaning: The Beginning of the Greatest Conversation (Ancient Philosophy) (Dr. Erik Van Versendaal)

A survey course from the beginning of philosophy with the pre-Socratics, through Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, and ending with the Cynics, Skeptics, Epicureans, Stoics, and Neoplatonism. In particular, those problems posed by Heraclitus, Parmenides, Socrates, and Plato that are important to the philosophical tradition will be considered, Aristotle’s philosophy will be surveyed as a whole, and the themes that are central to post-Aristotelian philosophy will be examined.

3 credits | Every other Tuesday, 9/6, 9/20, 10/4, 10/18, 11/1, 11/15, 11/29, 12/13 | 6 - 9pm EST | Online


CP631: Metaphysics (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

This course examines the basic concerns and principles that undergird the whole of reality and guide the way by which we think of the ultimate things to which the mind can aspire: existence, essence, the categories of being, the transcendentals, the analogy of being, and the existence and creative activity of God. This course acts as a capstone study to the whole of philosophy and is preferably engaged upon at the end of one’s certificate/degree studies.

3 credits | Every other Thursday, 9/8, 9/22, 10/6, 10/20, 11/3, 11/17, 12/1, 12/15 | 6 - 9pm EST | ALB and Online


D214: Spiritual Formation (Lisa Lickona, S.T.L.)

This course seeks to approach the world of prayer in its unity with lived experience. Beginning with a consideration of the witness of the Son of God who “teaches us how to pray” in and through His relationship to the Father in the Holy Spirit, we will then move to consider the lives and prayer of various saints, including Ignatius of Antioch, Anthony of the Desert, Benedict of Nursia, Bernard of Clairvaux, Teresa of Avila, Ignatius of Loyola, Francis de Sales, Therese of Lisieux, Charles de Foucauld, Teresa of Calcutta, and Madeleine Delbrel. Attention to each figure will include awareness of their place in the history of Catholic spirituality as well as a “practicum” in their way of prayer.

3 credits | Every other Thursday: 9/1, 9/15, 9/29, 10/13, 10/27, 11/10, 12/1, 12/15 | 6 - 9pm EST | ROC and Online


D217: Pastoral Care (Jessica Cole, D.Min.)

This course examines a variety of issues surrounding pastoral care and ministry in the parish. We will examine the theology of pastoral ministry, as well as exploring stages of faith development, ministering to Gen Z, family ministry, Eucharistic affiliation, and the current USCCB Strategic Initiatives.

3 credits | Every other Wednesday: 9/7, 9/21, 10/5, 10/19, 11/2, 11/16, 11/30, 12/14 | 6 - 9 pm EST | Online