PERSPECTIVES ON CHRISTIANITY: A CATHOLIC APPROACH
St. John’s University, Queens Campus, Fall 2012
Section 72327: 9:05am – 10:30am Tue and Fri, Classroom SJH 210
Section 70686: 10:40am – 12:05am Tue and Fri, Classroom SJH 212
Dr. Matthew Lewis Sutton
Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology
Office: St. John’s University, Queens Campus, St. John’s Hall B20–27
Student Hours: 1:00pm – 2:30pm Tue and Fri, or by appointment
Your Course Website: doctorsutton.net/the1000c
Undergraduate Bulletin: “An introduction to Christianity highlighting belief statements, practices, scripture, rites, theological writings, artistic expressions, and other discourses manifesting and expressing the Christian faith in its various traditions through its development. Credit: 3 semester hours.”
This course provides the student with an introductory encounter with the Christian biblical tradition and the vast historical sweep of the Catholic Christian faith. The student will attain a foundational biblical and theological literacy of the Christian Bible and see how its structural, canonical narrative interprets the world, the human person, and the nature of God. The student will also gain a greater appreciation of the historical, cultural, and theological foundations of the Christian faith.
By the conclusion of the course, the student should be able:
- to articulate (in writing and speaking) a knowledge of the Catholic Christian faith, the Bible, and the important characters, events, and ideas of Christian history.
- to analyze critically scripture and other theological texts pertaining to Christianity.
- to appreciate intellectually the Bible’s foundational place in Christianity
- to appreciate intellectually the importance of central theologians and critical texts that have shaped Christianity.
Course Texts: Required:
Bible, must be an appropriate translation for academic work, such as the RSV, NRSV, NAB, NABre, NIV, NKJV. (recommended translation The Ignatius Bible (Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition). Second Edition. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2007. Paperback ISBN: 9780898708349 or Ebook Kindle. If you have questions, see me.
John Paul II, The Redeemer of Man: Redemptor Hominis. New York: Pauline Books and Media, 1979. Paperback ISBN 9780819864338 or Online.
The course will be structure by the seven major ages of Christianity with particular focus on the Old Testament and New Testament Ages. These seven ages function as learning units that will give you an overall understanding of the development of the Catholic Christian faith. Throughout the semester, there will be assignments and assessments designed to give you an initial mastery of the overall scope of Christianity.
In this course, you can earn a total of 100 points. You earn these points by successfully completing the following:
- Class Participation: active engagement (questioning, answering, and discussing) = 10 points or 10%
- Encountering Christianity Assignment Sheets (graded orally or handed in) = 25 points or 25% (1 point per sheet)
- Occasion of Joy Exams = 25 points or 25% (3 exams)
- Occasion of Exploration Paper = 10 points or 10%
- Occasion of Jubilation Final Cumulative Exam = 30 points or 30%
Progress reports will be emailed to you at the beginning of every month.
We are at our best when:
We act with Academic Integrity, which means no plagiarism, no cheating, no damaging of other people’s work, and no assisting someone else’s dishonesty. Plagiarism is the act of appropriating and using the ideas, writings, or works of original expressions of another person as your own without giving credit to the person who created it. I will follow the university’s procedure for plagiarism and discipline to the highest extent allowable by this procedure, which can include an “F” for this course and the act of plagiarism noted in your academic file. Any further offenses entail suspension or expulsion. You need to read the libraries’ webpage on proper citation: www.stjohns.campusguides.com/citing
We are Actively Engaged with each other. As a student, you must attend class regularly, attentively, and promptly with readings and assignments completed. As a professor, I must be available to you outside of class for encouraging, listening, and guiding so that you can excel in your education.
- St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences mandates that “Regular and prompt attendance is expected of all students and is an individual student’s responsibility. Absence from class does not excuse a student from any work missed. There is no penalty for absence from class considered in itself. Students are, however, responsible for all announced exams and for submitting all assignments given in class at the proper time. Ignorance of such exams and assignments is not an acceptable excuse for failure to complete them.”
- You are responsible for everything said in class. You are responsible for getting class notes from another student. Only after you have received and read those notes can you contact me with further questions about the class.
We use Electronic Devices responsibly, which means during class time NO cell phones, text messaging, or mp3 players. Laptops, e-readers, or tablets may be used, but only for course work applications. If you do not use electronic devices responsibly, you will not be able to earn participation points for the class meeting. If it continues to be a problem, your overall point total will be reduced according to the severity of your non-engagement. Let us use technology for everyone in this class to achieve their best.
We turn in our Assignments promptly as directed by the professor. Even if you are absent, you are still responsible for turning in your assignments by the beginning of class or as directed. If your assignment is late, your grade for that assignment will be lowered by 10% for each day that it is late.
We attend confidently prepared for all aspects of the course. Readings and assignment sheets should be completed before class begins. Exams and the Final Cumulative Exam should not be missed. If you cannot make an exam, you must consult me in advance and receive clear approval from me. No make-up exams will be given unless you receive clear approval from me beforehand or as allowed by me. Since the dates of the exams are clearly communicated to you, it is seriously unlikely that you will receive approval.
We learn vivaciously because we are human and we desire to know the truth about the divine, the world, and ourselves.
We strive above all for Excellence without Excuses.