The Catholic Institute


Theology and History courses

TH501 WHAT CATHOLICS BELIEVE

 Level 5, 10 Credits

What are the key distinguishing characteristics of Catholicism? How are they expressed today? In considering these questions, this course aims to provide useful background for those interested in exploring the question of Catholic identity. 

 

TH502 WHAT IS THEOLOGY?

 Level 5, 10 Credits

Theology is “faith seeking understanding”. This course will explore questions about God, Jesus Christ, creation and being human in light of scripture, tradition and experience. Students will be encouraged to see themselves as both experiencing and receiving theology. 

 

TH503 CHURCH AND SACRAMENTS

 Level 5, 10 Credits
Course Material: Martos, J. (2001). Doors to the sacred: A historical introduction to the sacraments in the Catholic Church, Liguori, MO: Liguori/triumps
This course will give an overview of the major historical changes and developments that have influenced our understanding and practice of the sacraments. This in turn will help students to better understand the issues relating to sacraments today. 
 

TH504 CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING

 Level 5, 10 Credits

What is Catholic social teaching? This course will outline the Church’s teaching on justice and peace. Some major social issues will be explored with a view to helping participants better understand how Catholic social teaching can be applied to action for justice and peace. 

 

TH505 ISSUES IN CHRISTIAN ETHICS

 Level 5, 10 Credits

Christian morality seeks a faith-filled response to the ordinary and “not so ordinary” issues that people face. This course will examine the key principles underlying Christian morality and will introduce students to some of the different approaches to moral decision-making. 

   

TH601 THE SACRAMENTS TODAY

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course will give an overview of the theological understanding of the sacraments today and help participants view the sacraments more critically, renewing their own approach to and understanding of them. 

 

TH602 JESUS THE CHRIST

 Level 6, 15 Credits

As Christians, we are heirs to a profoundly rich history. For some two thousand years Christians have been struggling to come to terms with the Jesus we recognise as Christ, Lord and Saviour. This course will examine some of that history as it invites participants to answer for themselves Jesus’ question, “Who do you say I am?” 

 

TH603 RENEWING THE CHURCH

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course looks at the Catholic Church's understanding of itself from the time of the Second Vatican Council, particularly as expressed in the document The Constitution on the Church (Lumen gentium). 

 

TH604 SOCIAL JUSTICE AND CATHOLIC TEACHING

 Level 6, 15 Credits

It is the special vocation of the laity to advance the reign of God by acting as a leaven in the world and transforming society. This course will explain the Church’s social teaching in some detail and focus on the permanent elements in that teaching. The course aims to give participants the knowledge and understanding necessary in order to apply the Church’s teaching with confidence to the issues of the day.

   

TH605 FEMINIST THEOLOGY

Level 6, 15 Credits

This course aims to introduce students to the foundational principles and basic methodologies of feminist theologyStudents will explore the roles women have played and the contributions women have made to the growth and development of Christianity and using a feminist perspective, they will examine the impact and the legacy of these from within Christian history and tradition.  

 

TH606 THE CHURCH IN TIME AND HISTORY

Level 6, 15 Credits

This course outlinethe historical development of the Christian Church. It explores the formative events and key personalities associated with the various times in Christian history and examines some of the social, political and cultural worlds that have both been shaped by the Church and in turn shaped the life of the Church. 

   

TH608 COMPARATIVE RELIGION

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course explores the phenomenon of religion through the study of the core beliefs, ethics, rituals and divisions between religions. Students will focus on the ideas shared among the religions, the beliefs and practices unique to specific religions and some responses to religious pluralism.  

 

TH609 HE TūRANGA WHAKAARO - A PLACE TO STAND AND SHARE

 Level 6, 15 Credits

 This paper provides an advanced understanding of the Māori concepts introduced in the certificate. Through their engagement in the Te Reo journey, students will deepen their understanding of how this provides a world view that is the same, similar and different to their own and so gain a greater appreciation of the importance of their own story and its intersection with Māori world.   

   

TH611 THE LITURGICAL YEAR

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course will give an overview of the theological understanding of the sacraments today and help participants view the sacraments more critically, renewing their own approach to and understanding of them.

   

TH612 BIBLICAL THEOLOGY

Level 6, 15 Credits

This course aims to explore some of the dominant theological perspectives found in the Bible. It will explore the centrality of different motifs or themes that occur in the Hebrew and Christian scriptures in order to critically engage what insights they offer to contemporary Christian communities.

 

TH613 CATHOLIC SPIRITUAL TRADITION

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course introduces students to the major contributors, movements and contexts associated with Christian spirituality from the early Church until today. They will identify and analyse historical developments in the Christian spiritual tradition and examine ecumenical and Maori spirituality in Aotearoa-New Zealand from a Catholic perspective. 

   

TH614 CHRISTIAN VALUES AND ETHICS

Level 6, 15 Credits
Contemporary social practices and institutions, including sexuality, marriage and family life are facing radical change.  this course will help students to imaginatively and creatively engage with some of the key issues that people face in our contemporary world within the framework of the Catholic-Christian moral tradition and canon law. 
   

TH615 CHRISTIAN ART AND ARCHITECTURE

Level 6, 15 Credits

This course explores the various ways Christian beliefs and practices have found expression in the visual arts. It examines significant artistic contributions to Christianity such as the Basilica of St. Peter, Michelangelo’s Pietà, the Sistine Chapel, Bernini’s Piazza San Pietro, and modern abstract paintings and contemporary sacred spaces. Students will engage the ideas of beauty in Western theological traditionsconnections between faith and arts and beauty and holiness.

   

TH620 STUDIES IN CHURCH HISTORY

Level 6, 15 Credits

This course explores the growth and development of the Christian Church as it responds to changing social, historical and cultural times. It investigates the dynamic nature of the relationship between the Church and the world. It examines the impact key institutions; movements; events and teachings of the Church have had on the people and history of their own time and on the contemporary Catholic Church 

 

TH621 THE EARLY CHURCH 

 Level 6, 15 Credits

The period is a long one and it is not possible to cover all issues. The course will examine the emergence of the Church within the culture of the Roman Empire, both east and west. It will trace the conflict between heresy and orthodoxy, especially in the debates concerning the person of Christ. Attention will also be given to the administration of the Church and the development of episcopal and papal government. In conclusion, we shall look at the conflict over the use of images which was resolved by the seventh ecumenical council. 

 

TH622 THE MEDIEVAL CHURCH

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course will look at the Church in Western Europe between about the 8th and 15th centuries.  It will examine the following: the process and extent of conversion, the  growth and importance of monasticism and other religious orders, the growth of papal government and the nature of the papacy’s relations with kings and emperors, the religious attitudes and observances of the laity, and religious and ecclesiastical reform movements at all levels of the Church.  The emphasis throughout will be on the interrelationship between the Church and the society in which it operated.

 

TH623 THE REFORMATION

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course traces the history of the Church from before the Protestant Reformation and looks at the events that led up to the Counter-Reformation and the Council of Trent. Areas covered include Counter-Reformation theology, spirituality and attitudes to new scientific learning. Martin Luther, Henry VIII, Mary Tudor, Queen Elizabeth I and John Calvin will be some of the people studied.

 

TH624 THE CHURCH IN THE MODERN AGE

 Level 6, 15 Credits

This course examines the Church’s response to the changing historical, cultural, political and social context of the world between the two Vatican Councils (1864 - 1964)Students will explore the impact of the democratisation of Europe and growth of Communism, Fascism and Nazism as well as the changes brought by a growth in missionary activity and the spiritual revival of religious communities. 

 

TH625 THE CHURCH IN AOTEAROA NEW ZEALAND

 Level 6, 15 Credits
This course provides an opportunity to learn about the arrival and development of the Church in New Zealand. Students will explore the major personalities and events associated with the establishment of a New Zealand Church and the impact of the increasing number of settlers on the mission to the tangata whenua