Theology

Theology

Theology Department Philosophy

The Theology Department creates a loving environment, where students can have an encounter with Jesus Christ, while deepening their understanding of the truth, beauty, and goodness of His Church. Through the illumination of all knowledge with the light of faith, students are invited to be disciples, proclaiming the Gospel while loving and serving others.

Course of Study
Bishop Kelly students are required to take a minimum of 7 semesters of Theology, but may take more. Students can expect to take the following classes throughout their time at BK.

  • Grade 9: Theology I (2 Semesters)
  • Grade 10: Theology II (2 Semesters) or Pastoral Arts (2 Semesters)
  • Grade 11: Catholic Way of Life (1 Semester) or Catholic Life and Leadership (1 Semester) and Comparative Religions (1 Semester)
  • Grade 12: 1 semester of a theology elective; additional semester as desired by student

Service Learning Requirement
Theology classes in 9th, 10th, and 11th grades incorporate a service learning requirement. Each student must complete and document a minimum of 10 hours of community service. Details and qualifying service projects are determined by individual instructors.

ATTENTION STUDENTS!  Any courses marked with an “*” after the course name require you to complete an Application Form. Please expand courses below to access their specific “Required Application Form” links at the bottom of each course description.

Grade Level: 9
2 Semesters (FY)

The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the person of Jesus as he is revealed Sacred Scripture, both Old and New Testaments. All freshmen are required to take both semesters of Theology I.

Semester I: Jesus Christ in Scripture
In the first semester, students will gain a general knowledge and appreciation of the Sacred Scriptures. Through their study of the Bible they will come to encounter the living Word of God, Jesus Christ. In the course they will learn about the Bible, authored by God through Divine Inspiration, and its value to people throughout the world. They will learn how to read the Bible, become familiar with the major sections of the Bible, and the books included in each section. The students will pay particular attention to the Old Testament scriptures which foreshadow Jesus and the Paschal Mystery.

Semester II: Who is Jesus Christ?
In the second semester, students will pursue a with a historical understanding of Jesus, his birth and his life and times. Students will have an opportunity to understand the “Jewish” world in which Jesus lived and taught. Students will be able to articulate Jesus’ moral understanding of living in and for the kingdom of God and will continue to develop and demonstrate a Christian morality based on the teachings of Jesus Christ.

Grade Level: 10
Prerequisite: Theology I
2 Semesters (FY)

Semester I: The Paschal Mystery
The purpose of this course is to help students understand all that God has done for us through his Son, Jesus Christ. Students will learn that for all eternity, God has planned for us to share eternal happiness with him, which is accomplished through the redemption Christ won for us. Students will learn that they share in this redemption only in and through Jesus Christ. They will also be introduced to what it means to be a disciple of Christ, with an emphasis on the Universal Call to Holiness and the life of prayer.

Semester II: The Church
The purpose of this course is to help students understand that in and through the Church they encounter the living Jesus Christ. They will be introduced to the fact that the Church was founded by Christ through the Apostles and is sustained by him through the Holy Spirit. The students will come to know that the Church is the living Body of Christ today. In this course, students will learn not so much about events in the life of the Church nature of the Church. They will explore the role of the Apostles and their successors in the Church and see how the Church is relevant to their lives today and the differing roles of the vocation and their complementarity in the life of the Church. The students will be presented with the essential role of the Church for the salvation of souls and their role in continuing the mission of the Church.

Grade Level: 11*
First Semester (S1); Spring Semester (S2)

This one-semester junior class is offered each semester of the school year. The course is designed to help students understand how the Catholic Church relates to non-Catholic Christians as well as to people of other religions or no religion. It starts with the foundation that Jesus Christ established the Catholic Church and gave to her the fullness of God’s revelation. Comparative Religions also explores the recognition of spiritual truths that can be found in non-Catholic Churches and religions. This course will help students see the ways that other systems of belief or practice are different from the Catholic faith. Additionally, the class incorporates with, through and beyond the textbook a Catholic apologetic focus. This includes open dialogue between the Catholic Church and the particular religion while pointing out differences and similarities in doctrine, tradition, and practice. The curriculum is aligned with the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Framework. Each section of theclasstextbook( ExploringtheReligionsofOurWorld, AveMariaPress)that specifically refers to Christianity and Catholicism has been granted a Nihil
Obstat and Imprimatur.

Ten hours of service learning will be a component of the course with emphasis on
school related service projects.

* Juniors must take a semester of Catholic Way of Life, and one semester of Comparative Religions

Grade Level: 11
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II
First Semester (S1); Second Semester (S2)
Application required, instructor permission required

This course aims to deepen students’ understanding of Catholic Sacramental Life and the ways the Sacraments support life-long servant leadership, in the footsteps of Christ himself.

This one-semester junior class is offered each semester of the school year. This course will emphasize how church teachings, scripture, tradition and sacraments promote servant leadership. The course will also offer ways for students to hone and practice their Christian leadership skills as members of the Campus Ministry team. The primary focus of the course is on the sacraments of church and how they provide a strong foundation for a faith-filled life. Students will learn about the foundational aspects of sacramental theology and history. They will recognize key aspects of each sacrament and be able to identify them as sacraments of initiation (Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist), or sacraments of healing (Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick) and sacraments of vocation (Matrimony and Holy Orders) In the second half of the course the students will focus on the vocation of matrimony. In this part of the semester students will investigate the nature of the marriage bond in relationship to Christ and his church. They will explore the ideas of St. John Paul II by looking at his “theology of the body” and the church’s approach to natural family planning. Throughout the semester, students will find ways to serve their fellow students through liturgy, retreats, and other Campus Ministry activities.

Required Application Form »

Grade Level: 11
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II
First Semester (S1); Spring Semester (S2)

This one-semester junior class is offered each semester of the school year. This course will emphasize how church teachings, scripture, tradition and sacraments
are the basis of a moral, faith-based life. The primary focus of the course is on the sacraments of church and how they provide a strong foundation for a
faith-filled life. A second focus of the course will be on marriage and family issues. In the first half of the course the students will learn about the
foundational aspects of sacramental theology and history. They will recognize key aspects of each sacrament and be able to identify them as sacraments of
initiation (Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist), or sacraments of healing (Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick) and sacraments of vocation (Matrimony
and Holy Orders) In the second half of the course the students will focus on the vocation of matrimony. In this part of the semester students will investigate the
nature of the marriage bond in relationship to Christ and his church. They will explore the ideas of St. John Paul II by looking at his “theology of the body” and
the church’s approach to natural family planning.Finally they will grapple with a variety of issues involved with families in the modern world.

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Theology Electives

Seniors MUST take at least one Theology elective in their senior year.

Grade Levels: 11,12 – Juniors may take this as an elective with instructor approval.
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II, Comparative Religions, Catholic Way of Life or Catholic Life & Leadership
First Semester (S1)

Ancient Philosophy and Christian Belief is designed for seniors. Students will develop a working familiarity with ancient Greek philosophers including Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, as well as selected Muslim, Jewish and Christian philosophers. Special emphasis will be placed on the philosophies of St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas. This is a college preparatory course. Students will be challenged to read from original philosophical works and to think critically and abstractly. The teacher’s role is to provide a means for the students to understand the philosophical texts and to demonstrate that Christian belief takes the process of philosophy seriously. Our fundamental issue is the effect that philosophy has on Christian faith. Only one semester of Philosophy may be taken to satisfy the Theology requirement. A second semester may be taken as a general elective.

Grade Levels: 12
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II, Comparative Religions, Catholic Way of Life or Catholic Life & Leadership
First Semester (S1); Spring Semester (S2)

The Campus Ministry course is an elective, which is designed to allow students a first-hand experience at living out the Gospel message through service to the Bishop Kelly High School community. At its core, the class will emphasize individual and small group spiritual development. Making use of class retreats, student body liturgies and a variety of service projects, the goal of the class will be to put faith into practice. Students selected as Campus Ministers will be called upon to share their faith in a variety of ways, and must be comfortable doing so. Campus Ministers do not have to be Catholic but all Campus Ministers should be practicing their faith on a regular basis.

Required Application Form »

Grade Levels: 11,12; Juniors may take this as an elective with instructor approval.
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II, Comparative Religions, Catholic Way of Life or Catholic Life & Leadership
First Semester (S1)

Philosophy and Christian Belief is designed for seniors. Students will develop a working familiarity with modern philosophers and periods of thought from the Renaissance to the present. This is a college preparatory course. Students will be challenged to read from original philosophical works and to think critically and abstractly. The teacher’s role is to provide a means for the students to understand the philosophical texts and to demonstrate that Christian belief takes the process of philosophy seriously. Our fundamental issue is the effect that philosophy has on Christian faith. Only one semester of Philosophy may be taken to satisfy the Theology requirement. A second semester may be taken as a general elective.

Grade Level: 10, 11, 12
Prerequisite: Theology I; Application Required
Two Semesters (FY)

10 th & 12th grade will be a Theology Credit; 11 th grade will be an Elective Credit Pastoral Arts is designed to work alongside the Campus Ministry course. It is open to all students interested in participating in school-related liturgical functions. Students will be trained to be active participants and confident leaders for music during liturgies at school and at their parishes. The learning environment will be active. In addition to traditional lectures and demonstrations, students will be given hands-on “lab” experience in pastoral music ministry. The content follows the sophomore course of study. An application is required for admission to Pastoral Arts. The curriculum is aligned with the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Framework.Ten hours of service learning will be a component of each semester (for sophomores) with the emphasis on work within a worship community or religious organization.

Required Application Form »

Grade Level: 12
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II, Comparative Religions, Catholic Way of Life or Catholic Life and Leadership
First Semester (S1); Second Semester (S2)

The reason for this course is to introduce students to the Catholic Church’s social teaching. Students will learn that Christ’s concern for others, especially the poor and needy, is present today in the Church’s social teaching and mission. Students will be called to recognize and name the injustices in our midst. Topics include war, poverty, and governmental systems. Students will discover how to analyze causes of injustice in light of our Catholic faith, tradition, and the Catholic response. All Catholics are called to seek justice as an essential component of our faith. The curriculum is aligned with the U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Framework.

Grade Level: 11, 12
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II, Comparative Religions, Catholic Way of Life or Catholic Life and Leadership
First Semester (S1); Second Semester (S2)

Many are well aware of the stories of Bilbo, Frodo, Sam and the Fellowship of the Ring through Tolkien’s The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, as well as Peter Jackson’s screen adaptations of them. But far fewer people are aware of the rich Christian and Catholic theology of his “master work,” The Silmarillion. Tolkien began constructing this mythology as a Soldier in World War I, and this is the book, even more than the stories of hobbits, that filled his imagination and fueled his remarkable creativity.

In this course, we will use The Silmarillion as our primary text, as well as supplemental materials both primary and secondary. The purpose is to explore Tolkien’s Catholicism through his mythology. We will discuss topics like: Creation, Fall and Redemption Creatio ex Nihilo and Tolkien’s philosophy of “subcreation.” This class is meant to be for upper-level students who wish to explore the relationship between Catholic theology and literary mythology. It is interdisciplinary in focus, and will be taught more like a college than a high school course. Students register for “Theology Seminar”

Grade Level: 11,12
Prerequisites: Theology I, Theology II
First Semester (S1); Second Semester (S2)

The purpose of this course is to supply the students with a general knowledge of the Church’s history from apostolic times until the end of the First Millenium. They will be introduced to the fact that the Church was founded by Christ through the Apostles and is sustained by him throughout history through the Holy Spirit. The students will come to know that the Church is the living Body of Christ today and, as such, has both divine and human elements. In this course, students will learn about the Church’s first 1,000 years of history and about how the Church is led and governed by the successors of the Apostles.

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The Bishop Kelly community recognizes the family as the student’s first and most influential teacher.

Through education and personal experience, we build upon that foundation to prepare each graduate for a lifetime quest to reach excellence.