SPIRITUALITY AND THEOLOGY: KNOWING GOODNESS
Robust theology curriculum
The greatest commandment is to love God above all things, with one’s whole heart, mind, and strength.
As St. Thomas Aquinas reminds us, one cannot love what one does not know.
At Sedes Sapientiae School, we believe that religious education is a critical part of a broad education. It is not an add-on, a “nice-to-have,” a secondary consideration. We understand that some people think that “religion won’t get my child into college” — but it may get that child into heaven, which is even more important. Moreover, robust theological training shows that a person can think, which is attractive to colleges. “Religion isn’t a career skill” — actually it is, because one brings one’s religious values into the workplace where justice, compassion, understanding, and virtue are all qualities that make an employee stand out today.
Theology gives indispensable meaning to the other areas of knowledge. For instance, theology lets us see the things of the world as created by God as we study the way that world works in physics, chemistry, biology, or math. We can perceive in these sciences their deeper divine underpinnings — which are just as real (if not even more real) as gravity, covalent bonding, or the Krebs cycle. Theology studies the highest reality and the highest truth, in which all the other sciences participate and to which they are subordinate: God Himself.
We approach the academic subject of theology with the same standards and expectations as our other academic subjects. Our students encounter reliable sources of Catholic theology and knowledge, arming them with timeless truths and first sources. They are thus equipped to evaluate capricious trends and fads the way that St. Paul enjoins us, “Test everything and keep what is good” (1 Thes 5:21).
Sacred Scripture, St. Thomas Aquinas, Church Fathers, Magisterial texts including Vatican II and recent Popes, and carefully selected contemporary authors comprise our primary teaching instruments.
With knowledge comes responsibility. Knowing the Catholic faith is an empty shell if the one who knows it does not live it out. The second greatest commandment is to love one’s neighbor as oneself. Living the faith at school has resulted in true friendships among students, as well as between students and their tutors.
Each day the school begins by praying as a community.
Liturgical prayer: Students at Sedes Sapientiae School begin the school day singing and reciting lauds in Latin and English. Mass is available weekly to our students and faculty.
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction occurs every First Friday.
Rosary: Each week, the students pray the rosary and other devotions.
Our school is permeated by Catholic imagery and demeanor.
THEOLOGY READING LIST
Grade 6: The Commandments
- Following Christ (Faith and Life Series)
- Books on the Saints
Grade 7/8: The Old Testament and New Testament
- The Holy Bible (Ignatius)
- Bible History, Schuster
- Life of Christ (Ignatius)
- Our Life in the Church (Ignatius)
Grade 9: The Creed
- Aquinas Catechism
- Catechisms of the Catholic Church
- Holy Bible
- Jesus of Nazareth, Benedict XVI
- Lumen Gentium
- Pope Benedict’s Wednesday Audience, 23 May 2012
- Homilies of St. John Chrysostom on Paul’s Letter to the Hebrews
- Third Letter of Cyril to Nestorius
- Ancient Homily for Holy Saturday from Office of Readings in the Liturgy of the Hours
- Dives in Misericordia, John Paul II
- Against Heresies, Irenaeus
- Homilies on purgatory and heaven, John Paul II
- Homily on the Ascension (sermon 74), Leo the Great
- Redemptor Hominis, John Paul II
- Summa Theologica, Thomas Aquinas
- Catholic Christianity, Peter Kreeft
Grade 10: The Sacraments
- Mass and the Sacraments, Laux
- The History of the Church, Eusebius
- Early Christian Writings, Apostolic Fathers
Grade 11: Christian Idea of Man
- Summa Theologica, St. Thomas Aquinas
- Vix Pervenit, Benedict XVI
- Nature of Love, Dietrich von Hildebrand
- Veritatis Splendor, John Paul II
- Laborem Exercens
- Rerum Novarum, Leo XIII
- Humanae Vitae, John XXIII
- Sources of Christian Ethics, Rev. Servais Pinckaers, O.P.
- Quadragesimo Anno, Pius XI
- Spiritual Life: A Treatise on Ascetical and Mystical Theology, Adolphe Tanquerey, S.S.
- Current articles in bioethics, various authors.
Grade 12: The Devout Life
- Catechisms on prayer
- Various readings by the Doctors, Fathers, and Magisterium of the Church
- Introduction to the Devout Life, Francis De Sales
- Trustful Surrender to Divine Providence, Jean Baptiste Saint-Jure, S.J., and St. Claude de la Colombier
- Rule of St. Benedict
- Story of a Soul, Therese of Lisieux
- Dominican: Rule of St Augustine (study)
- Franciscan: Little Flowers of St. Francis (poverty)
- Ignatian: Rules of Discernment, Examen Prayer, Spiritual Exercises
- Benedictian: Rule of St. Benedict
- Carmelite: Story of a Soul
Apologetics/World Religions [TBA]