ST 403 The Church and Its Sacraments



Module Aims

-To introduce students to the theological understanding of the Church as it emerges in the Scriptures and as it unfolds in history.

- To demonstrate an ability to critically assess the evangelising mission of the Church today with respect to its origins as found in the New Testament Communities.

- To present the ecclesial vision of Vatican II and the work of contemporary theologians, with particular reference to the Ecclesiology of Communion.

- To introduce the students to the sacraments in their ecclesiological context.

- To understand the relations between symbol, sacrament and ritual and how this might help frame contemporary sacramental understanding.

- To explore and assess the impact and importance of Vatican II (and the major theologians of that time) in the development of sacramental theology.

Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate a critical awareness of the mysterious nature of the Church within the context of its ever-developing self-understanding.
  • Recognise the relationship between the Church and the Kingdom of God.
  • Appreciate the Church as the universal sacrament of salvation.
  • Know the key principles of Catholic sacramental theology
  • Be familiar with the key tenets of the Ecclesiology of Communion.
  • Recognise the importance of faith in a fruitful celebration of the sacraments.
  • Identify the issues relating to a more effective celebration of the sacraments in the context of the contemporary mission of the Church in Ireland.


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