Facebook Icon Instagram Icon Twitter Icon Parents Icon College Icon Students Icon Ratio Icon Zip Codes Icon

Theology

Theology Department Philosophy

Guided and motivated by the principles of our Catholic-Jesuit tradition, the Theology Department at Loyola High School is committed to providing a religious education with the following goals:

Formation

To provide our students, through a serious reflection on various biblical and theological sources, with a basic knowledge and understanding of the various elements of the Catholic-Jesuit tradition as a means for creating experiences where our students can have an authentic encounter with the living God.  In the process of striving for this goal, members of our diverse student body will also be more powerfully enabled to systematically examine and develop their own personal religious beliefs and practices.

Transformation

To demonstrate to our students, through a continued reflection on relevant biblical and theological sources, the personal responsibility they are called to assume for critically appropriating the religious understandings they have developed in a way that leads to morally committed social action, so as to become persons with a faith that seeks justice.  Such a desired outcome will mean our students will hopefully become religious leaders of competence, conscience, and compassion in our world.  The Theology Department commits to relying upon the relevant and appropriate assistance of the Community Service and Campus Ministry Departments in helping more effectively insure its goal of religious transformation.

Christ-Centered

Loyola High School, as a Catholic Jesuit institution, is ultimately dedicated to the unique revelation of God in Jesus Christ presented to us visibly in the Catholic Church.  The Theology Department, by facilitating authentic religious formation and transformation, will equip its students to better understand and respond to the loving redemptive example of Jesus Christ, a Spirit empowered development which will more powerfully unite our students with the Catholic Church’s universal mission of salvation which God truly desires for all.

Theology Graduation Requirements (8 semesters)

Students are required to complete eight semesters of theology to graduate.  The typical course sequence to accomplish this requirement is as follows: Freshmen year – one year or two semesters of Freshmen Scripture, Sophomore year – one semester of Theology II (Social Justice), Junior Year – one semester of Faith of Catholics, Junior year – one semester of Moral Theology, Senior year – one semester of a Senior Theology Elective (various class options are offered to meet this final requirement).

Faculty

Theology Department

Courses

Theology 1

Department: Theology
Teachers: Jerry Frumento '79, John Ahearn '07, Jesse Rodriguez, Tika Lee, James Crofut
Open to: Freshmen
Length: 2 Semesters

Theology 1 welcomes students into the Loyola High School community and is designed to ignite a desire to grow in relationship with God, self and others. The purpose of the course is to introduce the Loyola freshman to Catholic Theology, Ignatian history and spirituality, and the theological/ministerial experience at Loyola High School before turning to a thorough study and reflection upon the Hebrew Scriptures and Judaic roots of Christianity. The course culminates in an investigation of the socio-political and religious milieu to which Jesus enters, thereby setting the stage for the study of the Christian Scriptures, the person of Jesus and early Church beginnings in the sophomore year. This foundational course begins to equip students with academic skills, concepts and language necessary to engage in Theology and Ministry throughout their four years of high school and beyond.

Theology 2

Department: Theology
Teachers: Michael Shawver, Jesse Rodriguez, Thomas Portman, Thomas Cendejas
Open to: Sophomores
Length: 2 Semesters

Theology 2 is a required course for all students in 10th grade at Loyola High School. The second year of Theological Study continues the exploration of the person of Jesus and the emergence of the Early Christian Community begun in 9th grade, by turning to exegesis, critical analysis and reflection upon the New (Christian) Testament. Examining the life of Christ and the call to discipleship affords students an opportunity to uncover the implications of the Gospel for a moral life. The art of Ignatian discernment for moral decision-making in daily life is introduced and applied to a variety of the moral dilemmas young people face in this time. The course then turns from personal morality to the implications of the Gospel for building the Kingdom of God through the tenets of Catholic Social Teaching and the Jesuit/Ignatian emphasis on a Faith that does Justice, while forming men for and with others.

Theology 3

Department: Theology
Teachers: John Ahearn '07, James Crofut, Derek Brown, Scott Johnson, Michael Shawver
Open to: Juniors
Length: 2 Semesters

Catholic Systematic Theology aims to study the Church’s beliefs and practices as a coherent whole. Theology 3 provides a historically contextualized exploration of the following core questions: Who is God and how do we come to know Him? How do we grow in relationship with God? In light of our relationship with God, how do we grow in relationships with self and with others? Applying the discipline of systematic Theology, the course is organized into four sections: 1) The Bible an Church History, which serves as an introduction, providing a brief historical context for the remaining topics; 2) Catholic beliefs and practices – and how we know what we believe regarding God, Jesus Christ and the Church; 3) Worship and Spiritual Theology – This section addresses what Catholics believe we can do to grow in our relationship with ourselves and with God; 4) Moral Theology – This section considers what Catholics believe concerning how can we best relate to others in light of a developing relationship with God.

Bioethics

Teachers: Derek Brown
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This course will build upon issues introduced in the Moral Theology portion of Theology III. Students will be introduced to the range of issues that define bioethics together with core concepts and skills in the field of Bioethics, from a Catholic-Christian perspective. Students will think deeply about contemporary moral issues that arise in medicine, health, and biotechnology as well as those as old as life itself: How do we approach the very real vulnerability of illness and death itself? Should we clone humans? What should we think of the genetic revolution? How much control should we have over when and how we die? When does medical treatment turn into medical enhancement and should we care? Is rationing healthcare good, bad, necessary?

Catholic Peacebuilding

Department: Theology
Teachers: Thomas Cendejas
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

The theology of peace has its roots in the earliest of Hebrew Scriptures, and continues in the teachings of Jesus and the early Church. In this course, students will have the opportunity to explore this theology in three main areas: inner peace, inter-personal peace, and peace between nations and within communities. The promise of “peace that passes all understanding” will also be examined in the writings of St. Ignatius as well as notable theologians and inspiring peacemakers. A particular focus will be on the study of Christian nonviolence.  Students with an interest in Catholic Social Teaching will be able to continue their study with “Catholic Peacebuilding” while at the same time developing an interior life that can meet the profound challenges of life with serenity and grace.

Christology

Teachers: Jerry Frumento '79
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This Course asks the question “Who is Jesus?” This investigation begins with looking at who Jesus was, in his historical context. We will examine and research the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. In an attempt to know who, the ‘historical’ Jesus was, we will soon realize the limits of that ‘quest’ and shift our focus to who the early believers understood and experienced Jesus to have been. We will look at a variety of ‘Christology’s’ attempting to understand this real ‘mystery’ of the incarnation of God, how Jesus Christ is just that for the Christian Catholic believer, and how this can lead us to a real and vital relationship with God. And to take it a step further, we will then look at how nurturing this relationship calls us to live “in” the ‘Kingdom of God’ which Jesus preached!

Liturgy

Department: Theology
Teachers: Matthew Schaeffer
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This course is designed to provide students with the skills necessary to become competent liturgical ministers in the 21st century.  Liturgy harmonizes the academic study of Sacramental Theology and Church History with the study, preparation, and praxis of Liturgy.  Using the new Roman Missal, students will discover the richness of Catholic ritual through hands-on preparation, planning, and preparing music for school liturgies.  Members of this course will form the core singing/instrumental group for the school-wide liturgies. Through a solid historical and theological understanding of Hebrew and Christian Scripture in worship, as well as meditative praying of the scriptures, this course strives to synthesize academic theory with vibrant praxis, empowering the students with skills and experience.

Narrative Theology

Teachers: Jerry Frumento '79
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This course takes a non-conventional approach into the exploration of theological and moral issues. Is there a connection between who we understand God or the godly to “BE” and the way we live our lives. Does philosophy and our rational mind alone define God? Can we know who God is or must we experience this God in our own lives? We will examine the human condition in and through “Story”. We will reflect on our own life – our own “Story”. In these stories, we will investigate how one’s belief in God or the struggles to know if God even exists, influences and determines a person’s behavior. We engage with powerful stories through literature and film that will enlighten and challenge us to identify the catch at least a glimpse of the Divine.

Science and Religion

Department: Theology
Teachers: Scott Johnson
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This elective serves as survey of the dynamic relationship between science and religion.  Areas considered in this interdisciplinary course include the history of science, the philosophy and methodology of science and the compelling and exciting religious implications of the different sciences. This examination of the relationship between science and religion will be presented within the context of the Judeo-Catholic/Christian tradition, which adheres to the notion that having to finally choose between science and religion is a false dilemma. Rather, the conclusions reached by science in studying nature, and by religion in reflecting on the message of Revelation in the Sacred Scriptures, according to their respective appropriate limits, at the very least, must never conflict, and the very most, can coincide in ways which contribute to a meaningful account of God, man, and the cosmos.  Students will be shown compelling ways in which science and religion can be integrated while maintaining an ever-expanding religious faith.

World Religions

Department: Theology
Teachers: Tika Lee
Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

The course is designed to enable students to examine the different religious traditions and cultures of our global community. Students will reach a level of understanding and appreciation, which is indispensable for promoting world peace in our conflict and tension-filled global village today. The course will help students to be more aware of: a) their own growth process as young men and, b) their encounters and experiences with the Sacred in their own lives and relationships; thereby cultivating a sense of sacredness, wholeness, and peace which makes life more joyful and fulfilling.

Theology Directed Study

Department: Theology
Open to: Array
Length: 1 Semester

This course is designed for serious and competent students who are interested in pursuing learning on their own. Students who apply for this course must detail in writing the nature of their study, which includes the topic, the objectives, the procedure, the readings and the assignments, and the method of evaluation for the course work. A selection of students will be made by the Theology Department (in April for the fall semester; in November for the spring semester), and the students will sign a Directed Study Contract Agreement assuming full responsibility for the completion of their projects and their activity during the program. Because of the great demands made by this program, each teacher will be allowed only one Directed Study student per semester. Prerequisite: permission and approval of the department chairman and the instructor.

Theology Teacher Aid

Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This course is designed to give seniors, interested and talented in Theology, an opportunity to aid freshmen, sophomore, and junior Theology teachers in their classes. Activities include leading group discussions, tutoring students, and assisting the teacher in correcting exams. Prerequisite: Students must have a 3.0 GPA overall, a 3.0 GPA in Theology, a willingness to accept the responsibility of helping to correct homework and exams, planning course materials, and working in the classroom every day. Permission of the instructor and department chairperson is required.

Theology Directed Studies

Open to: Seniors
Length: 1 Semester

This course is designed for serious and competent students who are interested in pursuing learning on their own. Students who apply for this course must detail in writing the nature of their study, which includes the topic, the objectives, the procedure, the readings and the assignments, and the method of evaluation for the course work. A selection of students will be made by the Theology Department (in April for the fall semester; in November for the spring semester), and the students will sign a Directed Study Contract Agreement assuming full responsibility for the completion of their projects and their activity during the program. Because of the great demands made by this program, each teacher will be allowed only one Directed Study student per semester. Prerequisite: permission and approval of the department chairman and the instructor.