Theology (THEO)

THEO 6020 Pastoral Theology — 4 credits

An exploration of the discipline of pastoral theology as it relates to the contemporary church and its ministries. Emphasis is on developing expertise in reflecting theologically upon ministerial experience through use of the case study method.

THEO 6030 Educating for Life: Religious Education in Christian Communities — 4 credits

An exploration of the Christian theological and historical foundations of religious education in contemporary Christian traditions. This course provides a balanced study of classic and contemporary religious education sources and theological reflection on personal experiences of religious education. It emphasizes baptism's significant role for living and practicing the Christian faith, especially for those preparing to engage in formal or volunteer religious education ministry within church structures.

THEO 6060 Issues in Pastoral Theology — 4 credits

An examination of the concept of pastoral care as it manifest in scripture, church history and specific contemporary ministries. Such topics as grief, the recovery of chemically dependent people and the role of women in the church are explored. You also reflect on your life stories as they relate to the understanding of ministry.

THEO 6090 Passing On The Faith: The Ministry Of Faith Formation — 4 credits

An identification and examination of religious education processes, programs and practices with special attention to: (1) a diversity of theological understandings among and across various age groups (2) teaching strategies and practical methods appropriate to various ages and groups (3) the divergent practices among various religious membership groups (4) the philosophical and cultural differences of ethnic groups This course engages students in limited field observation involving assessment, planning, identifying of resources and evaluation of existing catechetical practices. Personal assessment of students' ministerial competency and individual goal setting conclude the class.

THEO 6100 Old Testament Texts: A Critical Study — 4 credits

This course is devoted to thoughtful and scholarly reading of the entire range of texts comprising the Old Testament. Attention is paid to the historical background of the texts, to the process of their having slowly taken the shape and character they now possess, and to the philological and literary skills necessary for one to understand the original intent of the texts' authors.

THEO 6200 New Testament Texts: A Critical Study — 4 credits

The historical, religious and cultural contexts of the New Testament literature are studied along with the process of writing, editing and transmitting the texts. Emphasis is on an in-depth reading of the texts in the light of contemporary scholarship.

THEO 6300 Advanced Scripture — 4 credits

This course examines a topic, theme or book in the area of biblical studies. It involves an in-depth study of biblical texts to enable you to develop skills in exegesis and research.
Prerequisites: THEO 6100 or THEO 6200.

THEO 6440 History of Spirituality I: Early Church to Reformation — 4 credits

This course examines the foundations and major influences of Christian spirituality from its biblical roots through its monastic developments to the eve of the Reformation. By studying major primary sources in both the Christian East and West, you become familiar with the theological, cultural and personal factors that contributed to the church's understanding of the spiritual life.

THEO 6540 History of Spirituality II: Reformation to Vatican II — 4 credits

This course situates major currents of Christian spirituality from the late Medieval period through the Reformation up to Vatican II. The theological, cultural, political and personal factors influencing selected writers and works are presented, read and critiqued in light of gospel values and visions.

THEO 6681 Directed Study — 1 credit

Directed Study is for students whose circumstances prohibit them from taking a regularly scheduled course, which they need to complete the degree. These circumstances must be extraordinary and unavoidable. The availability of Directed Study is dependent on the faculty member's capacity and willingness. MAT students are limited to one Directed Study during their course of study.
Prerequisites: Faculty sponsorship and approval of the MAT director and academic dean.

THEO 6682 Directed Study — 2 credits

Directed Study is for students whose circumstances prohibit them from taking a regularly scheduled course, which they need to complete the degree. These circumstances must be extraordinary and unavoidable. The availability of Directed Study is dependent on the faculty member's capacity and willingness. MAT students are limited to one Directed Study during their course of study.
Prerequisites: Faculty sponsorship and approval of the MAT director and academic dean.

THEO 6684 Directed Study — 4 credits

Directed Study is for students whose circumstances prohibit them from taking a regularly scheduled course, which they need to complete the degree. These circumstances must be extraordinary and unavoidable. The availability of Directed Study is dependent on the faculty member's capacity and willingness. MAT students are limited to one Directed Study during their course of study.
Prerequisites: Faculty sponsorship and approval of the MAT director and academic dean.

THEO 6700 God and Christ — 4 credits

This course has three aims: 1) to study how a believer in God responds to the challenges of science, atheism and suffering 2) to explore contemporary Christian models of God, such as the model of God presented by process theology, the model of God offered by Christian feminists and the model of God as three persons 3) to examine the various contemporary images and models of Christ's person and work. Who is Jesus Christ? What does it mean to say that Christ is the savior?.

THEO 6720 Spirituality and Leadership — 2 credits

A study of the style and impact of different leaders, men and women, whose spiritual transformation was central to their lives. Biography and autobiography will be used to examine critical themes such as gender differences within the spiritual journeys of these influential persons. Students also explore a specific spiritual discipline practiced by each leader. Among those studied are Martin Luther King Jr., Saint Joan of Arc, Etty Hillesum and Buddha. NOTE: Can be applied as an elective to other graduate programs. Open to auditors.

THEO 6740 Introduction to Spiritual Direction — 2 credits

This course provides an introduction to the ministry of spiritual direction. It includes an understanding of what spiritual direction is and is not, what methods might be employed, what personal gifts and professional skills are needed, and specific ethical concerns related to this ministry. Students are strongly encouraged to be seeing a spiritual director at the time of their participation in the course.

THEO 6750 Foundational Issues in Spiritual Direction — 2 credits

This course is for students in the graduate certificate program for Spiritual Direction. With special emphasis on the ongoing discernment of a call to this ministry, students are invited to deepen their knowledge and skills by: 1. doing spiritual direction in dyads and triads 2. writing verbatim and process notes 3. examining issues that arise in the practice of spiritual direction. E.g. need for referral, boundary violations, and gender and sexuality issues 4. experiencing supervision in a group 5. exploring spiritual direction of groups 6. fostering and maintaining the contemplative attitude as a director.
Prerequisite: THEO 6740 and be receiving spiritual direction.

THEO 6760 Family Spirituality — 2 credits

The role of the family in spiritual formation of its members; the mission of the family members in documents of the church and liturgical prayer; possibilities and obstacles surrounding the renewing of "family church" and "domestic church" as models for Christian life and worship; and construction of rituals appropriate to different ages and stages of Christian development and formation.

THEO 6770 World Spiritualities — 2 credits

A comparative study of Christian, Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim spiritualities is grounded in sacred writings, foundational symbols and meanings, and mystical movements.

THEO 6780 Spirituality and the Life Stages — 2 credits

This course is a spiritual-theological investigation of the ordinary crises, stages and predictable transitions of adulthood in their relation to personal maturity and Christian community. Spirituality is explored in the context of Christian theological traditions and in dialogue with the discipline of developmental psychology.

THEO 6790 Jung and Spiritual Guidance — 2 credits

This course critically examines the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung's understanding of the individuation process, the meaning of dreams, the structure of the psyche, the nature of religious experience and the role of the healing guide. Implications of these areas of psychotherapeutic concern for those who minister as contemporary spiritual guides are proposed and discussed.

THEO 6800 Church and Sacraments — 4 credits

The role of myth, ritual and symbol in the creation and transformation of ecclesial communities; the Christian theology of the Incarnation, Resurrection and Holy Spirit as fundamental to the development of the Christian understandings of sacrament; forms of liturgy; church; the function of rituals of initiation, election and healing in the spiritual lives of individuals; and the effect of a sacramental view of the universe on human attitudes toward ecosphere and biosphere.

THEO 6810 Biblical Spirituality — 2 credits

A reading of the Biblical texts to integrate the Scriptures with the individual's world view, place in the world and relationship to God and the human community; how the Scriptures inform the way one leads one's life; and the relationship of critical study of the text to meditation, prayer and liturgy.
Prerequisite: THEO 6100 or THEO 6200 or THEO 6300 or permission from the instructor.

THEO 6820 The Art of Discernment — 2 credits

By investigating a variety of discernment methods in the Christian tradition and contemporary models, student explore what has helped individuals to listen to their inner experience as it resonates with or opposes their search for God. Listening skills, discernment of spirits and the application to the ministry of spiritual direction are taught. There is an opportunity to consider the discernment of groups.

THEO 6830 Spirituality And Sexuality — 2 credits

This course explores the connection between Christian spirituality and the experience of humans as sexual beings. It draws not only on the theological and spiritual tradition, but also on the best of contemporary research in the biological and social sciences. An aim of the course is the integration of the physical and spiritual dimensions of the human self. The course method is both critical and constructive, with respect to the inherited tradition and contemporary models.

THEO 6850 Liturgical Spirituality — 2 credits

Liturgical spirituality is the spiritual foundation of the Christian community — past, present and future. The biblical and ritual context of this evolving spirituality is discussed from the perspective of the historical tension between the ideal and the real in the community in Christ. Liturgical spirituality and its possibilities for individual and communal formation into the paschal mystery are critiqued with reference to the present and the future, as well as from an ecumenical perspective.

THEO 6900 Christian Ethics — 4 credits

The tradition of Christian morality in both its individual and social dimensions; a theological approach to character and virtue in human life; convictions, attitudes and feelings in relation to moral decision making; and moral norms, principles and perspectives in their role of mediating between gospel imperative and contemporary life situations.

THEO 6951 Independent Study — 1 credit

Independent study offers students in the generalist concentration the opportunity for creative learning on topics of their choice. A student works with a faculty member to develop a learning plan that specifies the content, objectives, credit allocation and process of evaluation.
Prerequisites: Instructor and program approval.

THEO 6952 Independent Study — 2 credits

An independent study can be arranged with the cooperation of a faculty member and the permission of the director. Generally, the director will discourage independent study because the philosophy of the program puts such a heavy emphasis on a core of foundational courses taken in common. Nevertheless, there may be situations where the independent study might be an arguable choice for a student. For more information, see the MAT program director.
Prerequisites: Faculty and program director approval.

THEO 6953 Independent Study — 3 credits

THEO 6954 Independent Study — 4 credits

An independent study can be arranged with the cooperation of a faculty member and the permission of the director. Generally, the director will discourage independent study because the philosophy of the program puts such a heavy emphasis on a core of foundational courses taken in common. Nevertheless, there may be situations where the independent study might be an arguable choice for a student. For more information, see the MAT program director.
Prerequisites: Faculty and program director approval.

THEO 6960 Comprehensive Examination — 0 credits

Upon completion of the required number of credits with an overall minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, students are considered a candidate for the MAT degree. At this point, students take a written comprehensive examination. Students must pass all three parts of the exam. See this catalog for additional information.

THEO 6991 Topics — 1 credit

The subject matter of the course is announced in the annual schedule of classes. Content varies from year to year but does not duplicate existing courses.

THEO 6992 Topics — 2 credits

The subject matter of the course is announced in the annual schedule of classes. Content varies from year to year but does not duplicate existing courses.

THEO 7754 Practicum — 4 credits

The practicum is an internship to supplement academic study and to give students the opportunity to put theory into practice and practice into theory. Internships in spiritual direction or pastoral ministry are among the possibilities. For more information, see the MAT practicum coordinator.
Prerequisites: Three MAT courses and program approval.

THEO 7764 Practicum - Off Site — 4 credits

This off-site practicum is specially arranged with the program coordinator. The practicum is an internship to supplement academic study and to give you the opportunity to put theory into practice and practice into theory. Internships in spiritual direction or pastoral ministry are among the possibilities. For more information, see the MAT practicum coordinator.
Prerequisites: Three MAT courses and program approval.

THEO 8990 Master's Thesis — 4 credits

The thesis is an in-depth research paper on a selected topic in spirituality or theology. The paper is conceived and written with guidance of a thesis director. Those intending to pursue a doctorate degree are urged to consult the program director about the thesis option.
Prerequisite: MAT program director approval.