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 2022

January 10th - April 28th (Note: our add/drop deadline is February 4th)

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

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

New Testament will introduce 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

6-9 pm EST | Every other Wednesday: 1/12, 1/26, 2/9, 2/23, 3/9, 3/23, 4/6, 4/20

B/C350: Philosophy for Theologians (Stephen Loughlin, Ph.D.)

This course introduces the basic principles, language, and approaches that philosophy has historically contributed to the approach to and service of theological study and reflection. The course prepares students to engage in theological discourse, fostering the logical, epistemological, ethical, and metaphysical framework necessary to the approach, understanding, development, and maintenance of theological positions consistent with the Catholic intellectual tradition.

1 credit | BUF and Online

6-8 pm EST | Every other Thursday: 1/13, 1/27, 2/10, 2/24, 3/10, 3/24, 4/7, 4/21

C/D322: Catholic Bioethics: A Matter of Life and Death (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 | ROC and Online

6:30 – 8:30 pm EST | Every Tuesday from 1/11 to 4/26 (no class on 4/12)

C/D365: Theology of the Body: Sexuality and the Sacred (Lisa Lickona, S.T.L.)

Today we find ourselves struggling to understand and navigate everything that has to do with gender and sexuality. Why is this? Why is life in the body so hard?

In fact, we live in the wake of a profound modern divorce between God and his creation, meaning and matter (Descartes), that has facilitated the vast expansion of man’s technological mastery over his world (Bacon). And even as post-modernity has decried modernity’s worst fruits —world wars, the arms race, the destructive global consumerist culture—we find ourselves nevertheless unable to re-discover the inherent purpose of the material order. A struggle to impose meaning has ensued—with the body as its most sensitive battleground.

This course seeks to understand the malaise in which we find ourselves and to explore in depth an answer that has been proposed from the heart of the Church. In Pope Saint John Paul II’s Theology of the Body, we will consider the human body as “sacramental” and the human person as inherently structured to express and receive love. We will discover a corresponding depth in the vocations to marriage and celibacy. And we will consider what this means for our experience lived “in” the body and not despite it.

3 credits | ROC and Online

6:30 - 9 pm EST | Every Monday from 1/10 to 4/25 (no class on 1/17 or 4/18)

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.

3 credits | ROC and Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Tuesday: 1/11, 1/25, 2/8, 2/22, 3/8, 3/22, 4/5, 4/19

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

This course treats biblical foundations, historical development, and contemporary nuances of Roman Catholic moral theology. We will consider scripture, natural law, church teaching, theological anthropology, and virtue theory as sources for moral decision making in the context of modern ethical reasoning. The course will focus on the meaning of human freedom, community, virtue, conscience, sin, conversion, and grace.

3 credits | BUF and Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Thursday: 1/20, 2/3, 2/17, 3/3, 3/17, 3/31, 4/21, 4/28

C228: Ecclesiology and the Theology of Ministry (Anthony Coleman, 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.

3 credits | ALB and Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Thursday: 1/13, 1/27, 2/10, 2/24, 3/10, 3/24, 4/7, 4/21

C319: Introduction to Apologetics (Matthew Kuhner, Ph.D.)

St. Peter wrote, “always be prepared to make a defense (apologian) to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence…” (1 Peter 3:15). In an attempt to take St. Peter’s exhortation to heart, this course examines the major aspects of apologetics, the theological effort to defend and explain the Catholic faith. Topics covered will include: the relationship between faith and reason, the challenges posed by atheism and secularism, dialogue with other religions and ecclesial communities, and the meaning of human sexuality. The nature and history of apologetics will also be explored, with a special emphasis on cultivating a “New Apologetics” to accompany the “New Evangelization,” so as to successfully address the questions and doubts specific to our age.

3 credits | ROC and Online

6:30 – 9:30 pm EST | Every other Wednesday: 1/19, 2/2, 2/16, 3/2, 3/16, 3/30, 4/20, 4/27

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

6-9 pm EST | Every other Wednesday: 1/19, 2/2, 2/16, 3/2, 3/16, 3/30, 4/20, 4/27

CP621: Philosophy of Nature (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

This course offers an examination of the ancient and medieval accounts of the natural world, specifically their understanding of nature, change, space, time, purpose, chance, and the principles upon which they rest. This is perhaps the most fundamental of all philosophy courses and, together with logic, establishes the vocabulary basic to the whole of the Catholic philosophical tradition.

3 credits | ALB and Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Tuesday: 1/11, 1/25, 2/8, 2/22, 3/8, 3/22, 4/5, 4/19

CP661: Ethics (Matthew Pietropaoli, Ph.D.)

This course will articulate the general components necessary to a sustained, unified, and useful investigation into the moral life. With a privilege accorded to the Socratic, Platonic, Aristotelian, Augustinian, and Thomistic traditions, the course will consider the question of human purpose, namely to be happy, and the means that must be marshalled in order to achieve this happiness. Among the components to be examined are the following: how virtue, vice, and habit are related to the development of human character; how do we understand free choice and the many and varied roles that both reason and will play in the realization of a free choice; what is meant by conscience and its role in the moral life; is the society we live in and the friendships we enjoy necessary to the realization of a happy life; can the purely secular approach to human happiness succeed or must this be realized within a religious context?

3 credits | Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Thursday: 1/20, 2/3, 2/17, 3/3, 3/17, 3/31, 4/21, 4/28

Fall 2021 Courses

August 25th - December 16th (Note: our add/drop deadline is September 22nd)

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 | ROC and Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Wednesday: 9/1, 9/15, 9/29, 10/13, 10/27, 11/10, 12/1, 12/15

A319: Johannine Literature (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

Johannine Literature guides students in in-depth study of the Gospel of John and the Johannine Epistles. Students will read the Fourth Gospel with Pastristic, medieval, and modern commentators and secondary literature treating its historical, literary, and theological dimensions. They will also compare the Gospel of John with the Synoptics and study its relationship to 1, 2, and 3 John.

3 credits | ROC and Online

6-8:30 pm EST | Every Thursday from 8/26 to 12/16 (no class on 11/25)

B/C410: Patristics: Introduction to the Church Fathers (Siobhan Maloney, S.T.L.)

This is an introductory course on the writings of the Fathers of the Church and their important contribution to the formation of orthodox Christian theology. The focus of the course is to introduce these early Christian theologians as the great teachers of christian doctrine and highlight their contribution through the Fathers’ explanation of the Christian dogma, and their refutation of heresies. Students will study patristic texts arranged historically and through the common classifications of the Fathers. For example, the Apostolic Fathers, the Apologists, the Latin Fathers, the Alexandrians (both the Fathers of Alexandria, such as Clement of Alexandria, and the great teachers such as Saint Athanasius and Saint Cyril of Alexandria), and the Cappadocian Fathers (i.e. St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory of Nazianzus).

3 credits | Online

6:30pm- 8:30pm EST | Every Wednesday from 8/25 to 12/15 (no class on 11/24)

B/C470: Secularism and the Relevance of Belief (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

“Secularism” is the epochal phenomenon that has determined over the past centuries a progressive emancipation of society and culture from the centrality of religion in general and Christianity in particular. While some tend to interpret secularism as a merely political phenomenon, this course explores the genesis, development, and nature of secularism understood as a broader spiritual attitude of the West, born in modern times and still shaping our minds today. More precisely, the course puts to test the interpretative thesis that the process of secularization of the West began when the Christian experience could not be perceived any longer as the “concrete universal” of Europe. The authors that will be discussed include contemporary theorists of secularization such as Trueman, Benedict XVI, De Lubac, Taylor, Del Noce, Giussani, D.L. Schindler, Schmemann, as well as classics such as Kant, Hegel, Comte, Feuerbach, Nietzsche, Marx, and Freud.

3 credits | ALB and Online

6-8pm EST | Every Tuesday from 8/31 to 12/14

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 | ROC and Online

6-10pm EST | Every other Monday: 8/30, 9/13, 9/27, 10/11, 10/25, 11/8, 11/22, 12/6

C302: Christology and Trinitarian Theology (Carmina Chapp, 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 | Online

6-9 pm EST | Every other Wednesday: 8/25, 9/8, 9/22, 10/6, 10/20, 11/3, 11/17, 12/1

CP605: Beyond Deception: Logic and the Freedom of the Mind (Stephen J. 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). The 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 | ALB and Online

3-6pm EST | Every Tuesday from 8/31 to 12/14

CP651: Philosophical Anthropology (Marco Stango, Ph.D.)

This course investigates the philosophical discussion surrounding the human person. We appeal to the major writers on this subject with an emphasis upon the Socratic, Platonic, Aristotelian, Augustinian, and Thomistic traditions, engaging primary original texts themselves and also their incorporation into modern models of the human person, particularly the personalism of St. John Paul II. Among the aspects considered in this course are the following: what is meant by “body” and “soul”; how has relation that exists between the two been articulated; how do we distinguish and understand the difference between the human person’s animality and his rationality; how do we describe human cognition, choice/free will, the human person’s affective life, and the social and spiritual aspects of our humanity; what is meant by the human person being made to the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:27); can it be shown that the human person survives his death?

3 credits | ALB and Online

6-9pm EST | Every other Thursday: 9/2, 9/16, 9/30, 10/14, 10/28, 11/11, 12/2, 12/16

CT673: The Drama of Life in Christ: Action, Contemplation, Communion (Catechism Parts 3 & 4) (Anthony Coleman, Ph.D.)

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).

4 credits | ALB and Online

6-9pm EST | Every other Thursday: 8/26, 9/9, 9/23, 10/7, 10/21, 11/4, 11/18, 12/9

D211: Discernment and Formation for Ministry (Lisa Lickona, S.T.L.)

Within the Biblical tradition, God continually speaks to humanity, calling them to the holiness of life. Recognizing the lifelong development of Christian spiritual formation, this course guides the beginning student in the practice and art of spiritual discernment. Based on the great spiritual masters of the Catholic tradition, this course will help those attempting to discern how God calls and to what ministry within the baptized assembly one is called.

3 credits | ROC and Online

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

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

This course provides a broad introduction to the ways in which people appropriate the mystery of faith, the process entailed in that appropriation, and overview of the history of that process and the types of experience which have emerged in that history. The students can achieve reflective understanding of their own practice, develop it more consciously and be enabled to appreciate and assist others in this area of ministry.

3 credits | BUF and Online

6-9pm EST | Every other Tuesday: 8/31, 9/14, 9/28, 10/12, 10/26, 11/9, 11/23, 12/7

D218: Issues in 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 | Online

6-9pm EST | Every other Wednesday: 9/1, 9/15, 9/29, 10/13, 10/27, 11/10, 11/17, 12/8