- Historical Literature: an examination of the Old Testament
with particular emphasis upon the Pentateuch. The traditions shown in
the text are highlighted, together with the meaning of the theology
- Wisdom Literature and Psalms: with particular emphasis upon
the Psalms, Proverbs and Job, this course explores the whole meaning
and understanding of wisdom literature in the world of Israel and in
the Christian tradition.
- Prophetic Literature: with concentration upon the exegesis
of at least one of the major prophetical works of the Old Testament,
this course examines pre- and post-exilic prophetism in the Old Testament
and the use of this literature in the Christian Church
- Introduction to the New Testament: a survey course introducing
critical methods, the origin and world of the New Testament, the formation
of the Synoptic Gospels, Paul, the Fourth Gospel, the Jesus of History
and the Christ of Faith.
- Synoptic Gospels: Building upon the introduction provided above,
an exegetical and critical presentation of at least one synoptic gospel
in depth, with necessary reference to the other gospels through historical
background, literary structures and theological themes.
- The Gospel & Epistles of John: a course in Johannine biblical
literature which presents the exegetical and critical examination of
the text with particular attention to the major themes of Johannine
- The Writings of St. Paul: an examination of selected Pauline
texts to understand the major significance of Paul's teachings as both
pastor and theologian. The central themes, style, structure and impact
of his theology are presented.
- Fundamental Christian Ethics I and II (two courses): the moral
message of the Scriptures, Old and New Testament; conversion, the basic
moral imperative of Jesus; historical overview of the ethical wisdom
of the Church, the moral agent and his acts, the natural law, the Magisterium,
positive law, virtue and sin, mortal and venial sin, the formation of
conscience, methodology in Ethics.
- Medical Ethics: a study of the issues of birth control, abortion,
sterilization, artificial insemination, euthanasia and genetics; professional
responsibility in health care in the light of the dignity of the human
person, natural law and the official teachings of the Catholic Church.
- Social Ethics: a study of human rights as the basis for social
justice, emphasis on the need to raise consciousness to detect the hidden
sin in the structures of institutions; historical and economic factors
resulting in an imbalance in the use of the resources of the earth;
the social encyclicals from Rerum Novarum to Sollicitudo Rei Socialis.
- Sexuality and Marriage: marriage and the family seen as the
proper goal and context of human sexuality; the need for integration
of sexual drives for the maturation of the human person. Tension and
sin in the misuse of sexual power. Marriage as human reality, its institution
by God, marriage as saving mystery (sacrament) in the Christian community.
The tragedy of divorce and the role of the Church in its canonical and
pastoral ministry of the divorced.
- The Church to A.D. 600: a study of the genesis of the Christian
community, its development of doctrinal and ethical positions, its relation
to its surrounding culture, its various forms of life and worship and
its geographical expansion from the first through the sixth centuries.
- The Mediaeval Church: a survey of the history of the Church
from A.D. 600 to the middle of the fifteenth century. A study of the
Church's development in, and effect upon, society during periods of
growth and unrest. The break with the Orthodox Church.
- The Church in the Reformation: the background to the Reformation,
especially in the late Middle Ages; the central figures of Erasmus,
Luther, Calvin and Zwingli; the special circumstances of the English
Reformation and the spiritual renewal of the Counter-Reformation.
- The Modern Church: a study of Christianity since 1648, with
emphasis on both secular and religious challenges to the Church and
on movements of revival and renewal with the Church. Canadian Church
history will receive a priority.
- An Introduction to Canon Law: this course deals with the theological
foundations of Canon Law and the fundamental principles of the Law in
the light of the Second Vatican Council. Particular attention will be
given to the role of the ministerial priesthood.
- Preaching: a first course in the basics of preaching in the
Liturgy, covering planning, preparation construction and delivery of
homilies and sermons based upon, and sustained by, theological reflection
on the Word that is proclaimed. Students not preparing for priesthood
may choose another Pastoral course to fulfil this requirement.
- Pastoral Liturgy: liturgy from its historical, theological
and pastoral perspectives is treated in the context of such areas as:
the Prayer of the Church, the Liturgical Year, liturgical planning,
the celebration of the Eucharist and symbols in worship.
- Practicum in Pastoral Counselling: Introduction to the theory
and practice of pastoral counselling, focusing psychologically and theologically
on current life challenges. Theoretical presentations, personal reflection,
group interaction, practice counselling.
- Pastoral Psychology: a course dealing with human behaviour,
development, personality theory, abnormal behaviour and maturity, along
with a philosophical discussion of human nature and behaviour in the
Christian context. Various styles of Christian living and spiritual
practices are explored from a psycho-theological point of view.
- Foundations of Theology: introduction to Theology. Analysis
of religion. Factors of theology: experience, revelation, faith, scripture,
tradition, magisterium, reason, culture, development of dogma and infallibility.
- The Christian God: the biblical concept of God and the evolution
of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. Unity and tension of the biblical
and dogmatic views of God.
- Theological Anthropology I: creation as the beginning of salvation
history: biblical theology of Creation, Christian tradition and official
teaching of the Church. Man as creature; man as God's image and co-creator;
the original state of man; the problematic of nature and grace. Man
as sinner; the biblical doctrine of sin and the Christian dogma of original
sin throughout history.
- Christology: an introduction to the basic themes relating to
the person and mission of Jesus Christ: biblical, historical and contemporary
reflection of the questions of Jesus and His work - incarnation, redemption,
- Theological Anthropology II: a study of the theology of grace
in its different perspectives: biblical meanings, theological speculations,
conciliar teachings; modern investigations concerning the relation between
grace and freedom; grace and nature; grace and pneumatology; grace and
- Ecclesiology: an introduction from a biblical, historical,
systematic and pastoral perspective into the mystery of the Church.,
magisterial pronouncements, especially Vatican I and II, contemporary
- Sacraments I: a study of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist
from a biblical, historical and systematic point of view. The anthropological,
ecclesial and christological dimension of the Sacraments of Initiation.
- Sacraments II: the biblical foundations, historical development
and theological understanding of the sacraments of "healing"
(Reconciliation, Anointing) and of the "social" sacraments
of the Church (Matrimony, Ordination).
- Integration of Theological Areas: this course is to introduce
the student to an academic integration of theological areas, aiming
for a comprehensive view of Roman Catholic doctrine in systematics.
St. Augustine's Seminary offers the following courses to candidates for
the priesthood or students interested in pastoral studies. These courses
are usually taken in the final academic year.
- Preaching Practicum: a practicum in preaching for students
who have completed their academic preparation and are about to assume
the responsibilities of pastoral ministry. Preparation, delivery and
evaluation of homilies.
- Ministry in the Sacrament of Penance: this course considers
the role of the celebrant of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. It will
be a practicum in the "hearing of confessions". Designed primarily
for those who have completed their theological course work, the course
examines concrete moral cases so as to prepare the future `confessor'
to be a competent minister of the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
- Preparation of Liturgy Presiders: a course on the Order of
the Mass and the Rites of Baptism and Marriage. Anointing of the Sick
and Funerals. While essentially a practicum, this course also discusses
the pastoral significance of the Rites as presented in the post-Vatican
II documents on liturgical celebrations.
- Ministry in the Sacrament of Marriage: a practicum surveying
the canonical and civil requirements for marriage as well as some aspects
of counselling. The processes of dissolution and declaration of nullity
are also examined.
- Parish Administration Seminar: a seminar-style introduction
to parish administration, rectory living and adjustment to the first
years of ordained life.
- Priestly Spirituality: this course consists of an examination
of the attitudes, dispositions and elements comprising the spiritual
life of the Catholic priest that serve to promote his holiness, integrity
- Pastoral Norms on the Sacraments: this course examines the
canons regarding the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, and anointing
of the sick with particular attention to the sacrament of reconciliation.
- Pastoral Catechetics: this course explores modern movements
in catechetics, especially their implementation at local levels. The
modern parish as a potential catechetical community is analysed. Ancillary
disciplines and modern research on psychological, intellectual, emotional,
moral and faith development of children and adults are integrated into
Honors Master of Divinity
Qualifying students are eligible to write a thesis after twenty courses
of their Master of Divinity Program or, for candidates to the priesthood,
after completion of the internship year. For students whose initial registration
was on or before January 1999, A- is the minimum standing average allowing
the choice of a thesis; for those students whose initial registration
will be September 1999 or later, A is the minimum standing average allowing
the choice of a thesis.
The standards for the Master of Divinity thesis will be those of a Master
of Arts thesis at Toronto School of Theology.
One faculty member, who may be from another college, will supervise the
thesis. It will normally be fifty to sixty pages in length with an upper
limit of seventy-five pages. The student will do readings to complete
studies in any areas missed from the core curriculum course due to the
focused nature of the thesis.
The thesis will be based on independent research (not connected to any
writing and research done before or during preparation of the thesis)
and recorded as such on the Master of Divinity transcript.
The thesis will be a full-year course worth two credits, only one of
which may be a core curriculum course.
If work submitted to fulfill the thesis requirement receives a grade
of B-, it will not qualify for the Honors Master of Divinity but will
count only as equivalent to two courses: one core and one elective.
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