THE 445 - The Theology of Mary Class Syllabus

Added on by Matthew Sutton.


St. John’s University, Queens Campus, Spring 2011

Section 14898: 7:10pm - 9:10pm Tuesday, Marillac 224A

Dr. Matthew Lewis Sutton

Office: St. John’s University, Queens Campus, SJH B20-27 Student Hours: 1:00pm – 2:30pm Mon and Thu, or by appt. 718.990.5052| suttonm[at]stjohns[dot]edu | | @doctorsutton

This course provides the graduate student with a theological mastery of Mariology in relation to the major theological loci of Christian Systematic Theology, particularly the loci of Trinitarian Theology, Christology, Pneumatology, Ecclesiology and Eschatology. While the students will deepen their understanding of the foundational biblical and historical Mariologies, particularly those of the first eight centuries of Christianity, they will also come to understand several current and significant Mariologies that have emerged because of the Second Vatican Council. The student will also be engaged in Comparative Mariology throughout the semester as we examine major Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant Mariologies and place them in constructive, ecumenical, theological dialogue.

The course is structured as a chronological sweep through the history of ideas on Mary and her importance for understanding the God revealed in Jesus Christ. We will examine Mary’s place throughout the seven major ages of Christianity with particular attention to the Early Church Age. After exploring the Mariologies of the Early Church Age, we will explore the continued development of Mariology, spending significant time thinking about Mariology in the Post-Modern Age through your papers and presentations.

By the conclusion of the course, the student should be able: - to articulate in writing and speaking a knowledge of significant theologies of Mary through the centuries - to analyze critically scripture and other theological texts pertaining to Mariology - to interact Mariology with other major theological loci and develop consistency of theological thinking - to express the similarities and differences of several theologies of Mary to develop constructive, ecumenical, theological dialogue

Course Texts: Required

PRINT SOURCES: - Bible, must be an appropriate translation for academic work, such as RSV, NRSV, NAB, etc. If you have questions about your translation, please see me. - Hilda Graef and Thomas Thompson. Mary: A History of Doctrine and Devotion. Christian Classics, 2009. ISBN: 978-0870612527 Paperback or Ebook Editions Available - Luigi Gambero. Mary and the Fathers of the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Thought. Translated by Thomas Buffer. Ignatius Press, 1999. ISBN: 978-0898706864. Paperback

ONLINE SOURCES: - John Paul II. Redemptoris Mater. Online - Martin Luther, Sermons, selections. Online - Paul VI. Marialis Cultus. Online - Pius IX. Ineffabilus Deus (Dec 8, 1854). Online - Pius XII. Munificentissimus Deus (Nov 1, 1950). Online - Qur’an. Online - Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, selections. Online - Vatican II, Lumen Gentium, selections. Online

Learning Assessment:

In this course, you can earn a total of 100 points. You earn these points by successfully completing the following:

  1. Class Participation – consistent, active engagement = 10 pts

  2. Minor Paper Summary of Major Journals = 5 pts

  3. Minor Paper on Marian Devotions in Art, Culture, or Liturgy = 10 pts

  4. Presentation on a Significant Modern or Post Modern Theology of Mary = 15 pts

  5. Research Paper on a Significant Modern or Post Modern Theology of Mary = 30 pts

  6. Final Cumulative Exam = 30 pts

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’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 offences entail suspension or expulsion. You need to read the libraries’ web page on proper citation:
  • 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.
  • Regular and prompt attendance is expected of all students. You are responsible for everything said in class even if you are unable to attend. We attend prepared for all class meetings.
  • We do not use any Digital Devices during class time such as cell phones, text messaging, mp3 players, or laptops unless the professor gives clear approval.
  • We complete our assignments promptly as directed by the professor. Even if you are absent, you are still responsible for turning in your assignments as directed. If your assignment is late, your grade for that assignment will be lowered by at least 10%. Your grade will be lowered more the later the assignment.
  • We strive above all for Excellence without Excuses.