Religious Studies

The mission of the Religious Studies Department is proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus by educating the minds and hearts of our students, through cultural awareness, collaborative teamwork, creativity, and critical reflection. It is our desire to make God known, loved, and served to each of our students, through Word, Sacrament and Service.

Senior Year Requirement: Each senior must take one full credit of Religious Studies. Each senior will have to fulfill a Social Justice requirement.  This can be achieved by taking either Global Issues I, Global Issues II, or Peer Counseling.

  • Religious Studies
#R72A Comparative Religions

0.5 Credit Level 2 NCAA

The purpose of this one semester course is to offer students the opportunity to examine non-Christian religious traditions.  The course begins with an in-depth historical approach to the Roman Catholic Church’s current teaching regarding non-Christian religions.  This course helps the student appreciate the diverse world in which he lives as well as grow in respect for God’s work among all people.  The course aims to deepen the student’s understanding of Catholicism, the dimensions of faith that are common to all humanity, and the elements of individual faith traditions that are unique.  The course involves readings, lectures and reflection papers.

Requirements for placement: juniors who have completed the Christian Doctrine course or senior status

  • Religious Studies
#R42B Christian Lifestyles

0.5 Credit Level 2

This one semester course is intended to help the student make intelligent, health-promoting decisions about the future. In order to accomplish this, the student will examine various topics such as identity and autonomy, love, communication, lifelong learning, work, money and possessions, dating, and various kinds of lifestyles (single, married, religious). In the treatment of all the topics in this course, the wisdom of the Bible and Church tradition will be used.

Requirements for placement: senior status

  • Social Justice
#R52A/B Peer Counseling

1 Credit Level 2

Peer Counseling is a two semester course which trains its participants in a year-long experience of “Servant Leadership.”  The course begins with a required four-day summer workshop. The course stresses training in leadership, counseling, and group skills, all of which are presented as a response to the Gospel, the teaching of the Church, and the mission of the Congregation of Holy Cross.  These skills are used in leading small groups, retreats, workshops, and directed service to their peers.   The course seeks to take students interested in growth and equip them for lifestyles of leadership
through service.

Requirements for placement: senior status; application; interview; faculty recommendation

  • Social Justice
#R62A Global Issues II

0.5 Credit Level 2 NCAA

This one semester course offers the student the exploration of social justice issues that are on a more worldwide scale than Global Issues I.  Biblical teachings, Church Tradition, and specifically Catholic Social Teachings, serve as a foundation for the study of famine, war and peace, and genocide.  The student will be challenged to seek an understanding of the causes of these injustices as well as guided to develop Christian responses to these issues.  A variety of teaching techniques including class discussion, research, appropriate audio-visual material, and written papers accomplish the goals of the course.

Requirements for placement:  senior status

  • Social Justice
#R42A Global Issues I

0.5 Credit Level 2 NCAA

This one semester course offers an understanding of the concept of social justice as it is rooted in the Bible and calls out for action in contemporary society.  The students are assisted to understand the causes of injustices, encouraged to focus attention on specific injustices in today’s world, and guided to develop creative ways to apply Gospel values and Church Tradition to the systems and structures of present reality.  The areas of injustice that are explored in this course are the right to life issues, poverty, hunger, and discrimination.  A variety of teaching techniques including class discussion, research, appropriate audio-visual material and written papers accomplish the goals of the course.

Requirements for placement:  senior status

  • Religious Studies
#R32B Christian Morality

 0.5 Credit Level 2

This one semester course is an examination of who we are as human beings.  The goal of the course is to develop an understanding of our relationship with God, our neighbor, and ourselves.  Through the use of lecture, small group interaction, class presentations by students, role-playing, reflection papers, and audio-visuals, the student is encouraged to look within himself, his life experience, and the society within which he lives.  He is asked to study Scripture, the person of Jesus, and Church teaching.  Ultimately, the course challenges the student to pull these many factors together in order to lead a coherent, reflective Christian life of service according to God’s plan for us all.

Requirements for placement: junior status

  • Religious Studies
#R32A Christian Doctrine

 0.5 Credit Level 2

This one semester course is designed to teach students what Catholics believe and why.  The students are encouraged to see the stable, gradual nature of Catholicism.  By discussing God’s Word found in Scripture, the Church and Christ, and our response to God’s Word, the relationship to faith is explored.  Emphasis is placed on prayer and intellectual study as a means to strengthen a lifelong Catholic commitment to faith.  An historical review of Church doctrines such as the Trinity, Resurrection, grace, teachings concerning Mary, and eternal life are discussed. Supplementary articles will add to the information given in the text.

Requirements for placement: junior status

  • Religious Studies
#R22A/B Christ and the Sacraments

1 Credit Level 2

This two semester course examines the life and teachings of Jesus and his effect not only on human life and history itself, but on the life of the student in particular.  The students study the Jesus of History—the divine Son of God who lived, preached, and healed at a particular place and time.  Major topics covered include the religion of the time, the politics of the time, the Gospels and their themes, parables, miracles, and the historical events of Jesus’ life.  The students also study the Christ of Faith--the title for Jesus that expresses our Catholic understanding that He is our Lord and Savior today.  The seven sacraments of the Catholic Church are studied as symbols of His living presence in our world.  They are presented as ways in which God reaches out to us in friendship and invites us to respond to a Divine Love.  Major topics include the historical development, the symbols and rituals used, and the central meaning of the individual sacraments.  

Requirements for placement:  sophomore status

  • Religious Studies
#R23A/B Christ and the Sacraments Moreau Honors

1 Credit Level 3

This two semester course examines the life and teachings of Jesus and his effect not only on human life and history itself, but on the life of the student in particular.  The course will integrate an examination of the sacraments as understood and experienced in the Catholic tradition.  The course is linked with the English II Moreau Honors course, challenging the students to integrate what they are learning in each course.  Cross-curriculum projects will be a standard feature of the course. The students study the Jesus of History--the person who lived, preached, and healed at a particular place and time.  Major topics covered include the daily life of the people, the religion of the time, the politics of the time, parables, miracles, and the historical events of Jesus’ life.  The students also study the Christ of Faith­—the individual Christians believe to be the Messiah and Son of God.  A bringing together of these two concepts (Jesus of History and Christ of Faith) and a deeper understanding of Jesus of Nazareth are the goals of this course. The sacraments are studied as symbols of Jesus’ continued living presence in our world.  They are presented as ways in which God reaches out to us in friendship and invites us to respond to a Divine Love.  The historical development, the symbols and rituals used, and the central meaning of the individual sacraments are major aspects of this course.

Requirements for placement:  English II Moreau Honors

  • Religious Studies
#R12A/B Old Testament

1 Credit Level 2   

This two semester course introduces the student to the study of the Old Testament and focuses on the journey of the Hebrews as the Chosen People through whom God spoke His message of salvation.  Through the study of the major divisions of the Old Testament, the goal of this course is to give the student an appreciation of the value of the Old Testament as a foundation of his own personal faith and as a rich traditional basis upon which the mission and message of Christ and the Catholic Church is built.

Requirements for placement: freshman status

  • Religious Studies
#R13A/B Old Testament Moreau HonorsĀ 

1 Credit Level 3

The Honors Old Testament course is one component of the interdisciplinary Moreau Honors Program that integrates English, World Cultures, and Old Testament, with the use of technology, long-term projects, analytical thinking, critical reading, research techniques and class interaction. This two semester course introduces the student to the study of the Old Testament and focuses on the journey of the Hebrews as the Chosen People through whom God spoke His message of salvation. Through the study of the major divisions of the Old Testament, the goal of this course is to give the student an appreciation of the value of the Old Testament as a foundation of his own personal faith and as a rich traditional basis upon which the mission and message of Christ and the Catholic Church is built.

Requirements for placement: previous record; high verbal scores on the entrance exam; signature of school counselor