One Free Summer Audit Opportunity - St. Bernard's

One Free Summer Audit Opportunity

Thanks to the generous support of the Knights of Columbus, St. Bernard's is delighted to offer the opportunity of auditing one summer course for free. We are committed to featuring courses that enhance the truths of our faith, and as such, wish to share our offerings with as many people as possible.

Auditing allows one to attend courses without receiving graduate credit. This means you can enjoy the benefits of taking a graduate course without having to submit the required coursework.

Scroll below to view all available summer courses. To apply, click the "Apply Online" button in between Session I and Session II courses below.

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.

Summer 2023 Courses

May 15th - June 30th (Session I) | July 5th - August 23rd (Session II)

(Note: our add/drop deadlines are June 3rd [Session I] and July 8th [Session II])

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

Session I

A205: Introduction to Biblical Studies (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

The sequence of Sacred Scripture courses at St. Bernard’s is meant to instill habits and skills of reading the Bible that will nourish the spiritual life of the student and candidate for ministry. This first course lays a foundation for all other Scripture courses. It intends to head off simplistic and hackneyed interpretations of Dei Verbum and instead to pursue the development of a rigorous ecclesial hermeneutic. Students will learn the practical building blocks and essential theoretical principles for a Catholic theological approach to the interpretation of Sacred Scripture. Topics treated include biblical geography, biblical history, biblical languages, biblical narrative, the framework of theology, textual criticism, historical criticism, biblical canon, patristic interpretation, the four senses of Scripture, philosophical hermeneutics, and Dei Verbum.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, May 16th, May 23rd, May 30th, June 6th, June 13th, June 20th, June 27th

A/B370: Archaeology and the Bible (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

This course brings together texts from the Bible and archeological remains from the ancient world. We will study the methods archeologists use to interpret artifacts and discuss what role the Bible has had in the framing of archeological questions. We will discover how archeological artifacts can enrich our understanding of the Bible and explore the role of modern politics in archeological debates. The course will focus on a period of over fifteen hundred years, from the Late Bronze Age (1550 BC) through the early Roman period (70 AD), and will cover such matters at stratigraphy, ceramics typology, iconography, sacred space, text materiality, and forgeries in order to build a richer understanding of ancient Israel and early Christianity.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Thursdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, May 18th, May 25th, June 1st, June 8th, June 15th, June 22nd, June 29th

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 | Online

Wednesdays, May 17th, May 24th, May 31st, June 7th, June 14th, June 21st, June 28th

B/D 338: American Saints and Blesseds (Lisa Lickona, S.T.L.)

It is true: great saints have come from Poland, Italy and France. But holiness also has blossomed here, right in our own land! This course seeks to uncover the face of American sanctity by diving into the lives and spirituality of thirteen Americans who have been canonized or are on the path: Kateri Tekakwitha, Isaac Jogues, Elizabeth Ann Seton, John Neumann, Francis Xavier Cabrini, Francis Xavier Seelos, Katharine Drexel, Michael McGivney, Dorothy Day, Stanley Rother, Fulton Sheen, Thea Bowman, and Walter Ciszek. How did these men and women encounter Christ in America? And what can they teach us about seeking Christ in our own time and place?—these are the questions that will drive our explorations.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, May 17th, May 24th, May 31st, June 7th, June 14th, June 21st

C226: Liturgical and Sacramental Theology (Rev. Anthony Barratt, S.T.L., Ph.D.)

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 | Online

5:00 - 8:00pm EST, Monday May 15th, Monday May 22nd, Wednesday May 24th, Wednesday May 31st, Monday June 19th, Wednesday June 21st, Monday June 26th

CP641: Philosophy of God (Matthew Pietropaoli, Ph.D.)

This course concerns the natural ascent of the human mind to a knowledge of the existence and the attributes of God – can God’s existence be proven, and can our language at least begin to represent God’s attributes without falling purely into metaphorical language or simple anthropomorphisms.

3 credits | Online

Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, May 16th, May 23rd, May 30th, June 6th, June 13th, June 20th, June 27th

Session II

A/D325: My Beloved is Mine, and I am My Beloved's: Mystical Commentary on the Song of Songs (Charles Hughes Huff, Ph.D.)

The Song of Songs has for millennia been the source of mystical reflection. As an allegory, it has illumined Israel’s relationship to God, the Church’s relationship to Christ, and the individual believer’s growth in faith, hope, and love in divine encounter. In this course, we will examine the poetics and mystical commentary of the Song with a special focus on the commentaries of Origen, Hildegard of Bingen, Bernard of Clairvaux, Theresa of Avila, John of the Cross, and Jeanne-Marie Bouvier de la Motte-Guyon.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, July 11th, July 18th, July 25th, August 1st, August 8th, August 15th, August 22nd

B/C418 Co-worker in the Truth: The Legacy and Thought of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI (All Full-Time Faculty)

In the homily for his inauguration to the See of Peter on April 24, 2005, Pope Benedict XVI stated the following: "My real program of governance is not to do my own will, not to pursue my own ideas, but to listen, together with the whole Church, to the word and the will of the Lord, to be guided by Him, so that He himself will lead the Church at this hour of our history." To listen to and be guided by the Lord was the sustaining foundation not only of his pontificate, but of the entire thought and legacy of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI. Guided by his papal motto, Cooperatores in Veritatis (Coworkers in the Truth), this course aims to provide a thematic and historical overview of several essential themes in Ratzinger/Benedict's thought, including but not limited to: prayer and love, philosophy and revelation, creation, eschatology and hope, history, the nature of theology, scriptural exegesis, Christology, liturgy, and ecclesiology. Taught by the entire full-time faculty, the course will examine and unfold these themes according to the expertise of each and with deep appreciation of the impact that Ratzinger/Benedict has had upon their own formation.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, July 5th, July 12th, July 19th, July 26th, August 2nd, August 9th, August 16th, August 23rd

C/D383: Atheism as a Pastoral Problem: Unbelief, Evil, and the Theology of the Atonement (Daniel Drain, Ph.D. [cand.])

In the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, Gaudium et spes, atheism is named as one of the chief problems of our age and as a specifically pastoral problem. This course aims to understand the multifaceted phenomenon of atheism in all its depth and to respond with the fullness of the Church’s vision of God, particularly in terms of Atonement in Christ. In Part One of the course, we will begin with an exploration of key figures of the 19th and 20th centuries, the so-called “masters of suspicion” (Nietzsche, Feuerbach, Freud) and will articulate precisely what is novel about modern atheism. In Part Two, we will turn to the foundational text of Judeo-Christian monotheism, the Book of Genesis. There, we will unfold the doctrine of creatio ex nihilo as a response to the surrounding pagan mythologies and will therefore seek to situate nascent Jewish faith as a more sophisticated belief system. Part Three will turn to the writings of Fyodor Dostoevsky to pose once again the question of unbelief, but from the perspective of Christianity. Part Four will explore a theology of Atonement, seeking to understand the mystery of God the Father and His role in the Paschal Mystery of Christ’s redemption. Overall, the course aims to present the mystery of Christ’s redemption as the fundamental and singularly comprehensive response to the phenomenon of unbelief and the problem of evil.

3 credits | ROC and Online

Tuesdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, July 11th, July 18th, July 25th, August 1st, August 8th, August 15th, August 22nd

CP621: Philosophy of Nature (Erik van Versendaal, 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 | Online

Thursdays, 6:00 - 9:00pm EST, July 6th, July 13th, July 20th, July 27th, August 3rd, August 10th, August 17th