Department News

The 2014-2015 Vernon Robertson Lecture

"The Metaphysics of Co-Inherence: A Meditation on the Essence of the Christian Message"
7:00 PM
February 17, 2015
Amelia Brown Frazier Convocation Hall, Bellarmine University

VERY REV. ROBERT BARRON, M.A. (Phil), S.T.D., Rector/President, Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Professor of Faith and Culture
M.A., Catholic University of America; S.T.B., M.Div., S.T.L., University of St. Mary of the Lake; S.T.D., Institut Catholique de Paris. Former Associate Pastor at St. Paul of the Cross Parish. A member of the Catholic Theology Society of America, G.K. Chesterton Society, Paul Tillich Society. Author of The Strangest Way: Walking the Christian Path, Creation as Discipleship, A Study of the DePotentia of Thomas Aquinas in Light of the Dogmatik of Paul Tillich, Thomas Aquinas: Spiritual Master, And Now I See: A Theology of Transformation, Heaven in Stone and Glass, Bridging the Great Divide, Word on Fire: Proclaiming the Power of Christ, The Priority of Christ: Toward a Post-Liberal Catholicism, and Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of the Faith. His articles on theology and the spiritual life have appeared in numerous journals. Father Barron is also creator and host of “Catholicism,” a ten-part documentary on the Catholic faith, and he is the founder and chairman of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries, a media group dedicated to the new evangelization.

The theology department offers a major and a minor and serves the larger general education program. Many of our classes invite students to reflect on their involvement in the local community. This video was created by a student to complete a final project for THEO 335 Theology from the Margins. It offers a wonderful example of what students learn in Bellarmine’s theology courses and illustrates collaborative work done with the Joseph of Arimathea Society.

Second Annual Theology Colloquy

The Theology Department hosted the second annual theology colloquy and dinner on Tuesday, April 15, 2014 in the Fireplace Room in Horrigan Hall. The theology colloquy provides an opportunity to build community among theology majors and minors, to honor excellent student research, and to foster and nurture a broader and engaged theological conversation across the campus. Three student papers won awards for their research papers.

Rebecca Harpring, a junior theology major, won first prize for her paper entitled "Hope and Healing for Battered Women Who Kill Their Abusive Partners.” Harpring participated in an immersion experience at the Kentucky Institution for Women and helped facilitate a Catholic bible study. In her paper, she argues that “[b]attered women who kill their abusers face marginalization from friends, family, churches, and society; however, God calls the human family to accompany these women and move towards healing.”

There were two papers that tied for second prize; two prizes were awarded. Michelle Carwile, a senior theology major, was awarded second prize for her paper entitled "Death for Perfection.” In her paper, Carwile discusses eating disorders and the churches’ role in “promoting healthy body image and educating girls so that they can grow up to be confident women whose passion is to please God and not society.”

Blake Reichenbach, a sophomore English major, was awarded second prize for his paper entitled "The Social Gospel: Christianity and Socialism in America.” Reichenbach argues in that paper that “the religious discourse that comes out of socialist ideology has been a shaping factor in the society of the United States from before the onset of the twentieth century, but has consistently faced hurdles of tradition, and has been subject to fluctuate in prominence with the strength of the economy and Americans’ faith in capitalism.”

Student entries into the essay contest were refereed by fulltime members of the theology department. Each student receives a small monetary award. We are very proud of their fine work!

The Theology Essay Award Winners (from left to right): Michelle Carwile, Blake Reichenbach, and Rebecca Harpring

Congratulations to Scott Holzknecht ('06)

Scott Holzknecht, graduate of the MAS program in 2006, recently published a book on Catholic social teaching for teens entitled Everyday Justice (St Mary's Press). Congratulations!

We encourage alumnis of the program to keep in touch. Please contact Greg Hillis, Director of the Program, if you have any news to share.

MAS 569 - Spirituality and Justice: An International Experience (India)

This year, our current MAS cohort travelled to Kerala, India, to learn more about spirituality in a pluralistic environment, including Hindu spirituality, Christian spirituality, Muslim spirituality, and ecospirituality. The theme for the course was “Unitive Spirituality.” We hope to post some pictures of their trip soon. Stayed tuned for next year's destination.

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