High School

 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you.”  – Matthew 28:19-20

Philosophy

The purpose of the Religion Curriculum at TMP is to equip Catholics of the next generation to understand and apply the teachings of Jesus Christ. The educational intent is to prepare our students; to be active parishioners, future parents skilled and knowledgeable to hand on the Catholic Faith to their children, students of higher education with perquisite skills to pursue additional Religious studies, and/or young men and women supported in the vocational choice of Religious Life or the Priesthood. Ultimately the goal of the Religion curriculum fulfilled is for each student to achieve faith’s goal: Eternal Salvation.

Course Descriptions

*Textbooks used for Religion classes for the High School are from the Didache Series put out by Midwest Theological Forum. The Didache is the first known Christian catechesis. Written in the first century, the Didache is the earliest known Christian writing outside of Scripture. The name of the work, “Didache,” is indeed appropriate for such a catechesis because it come from the Greek word for “teaching,” and indicates that this writing contains the teaching of the Apostles. The Didache is a catechetical summary of Christian sacraments, practices, and morality. Though written in the first century, its teaching is timeless. The Didache was probably written by the disciples of the Twelve Apostles, and it presents the Apostolic Faith as taught by those closest to Jesus Christ. In the Didache, we are instructed to embrace virtue, to avoid sin, and to live the Beatitudes of our Lord.
This series of books takes the name of this early catechesis because it shares in the Church’s mission of passing on that same Faith, in its rich entirety, to new generations.

 

Freshman Year

Introduction to Catholicism: Topics covered include; Call to Holiness, The Existence of God and Divine Revelation, the Nature of God-The Trinity, Creation, Man and Original Sin, Jesus Christ Incarnate of the Blessed Virgin Mary, The Paschal Mystery, The Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, The Resurrection of the Body and Life Everlasting, Christian Prayer, The Sacraments, Freedom, Morality and Grace, The Beatitudes, The Ten Commandments, and The Person and Society. Students are asked to read about and report on the life of a saint each semester, also.

Sophomore Year

Understanding the Scriptures:  Under the general heading of covenant,the Old and New Testaments are explained.  Much of the course is dedicated to reading the Bible itself, as well as studying background information about the Bible in the textbook.  The over all goal of the year is to give the student a sufficient grounding in Scripture to give the readings at Mass more meaning, as well as to make the student more confident to read the Word of God on his/her own in order to grow closer to God.

Junior Year

The History of the Church:  It is impossible to study the rise of Western Civilization without appreciating the role that the Catholic Church played in it.  This ambitious study clearly presents the History of the Church from the time of Pentecost to the present.  The greatest of the Church’s triumphs to the darkest of tragedies are recounted so that the student knows where we have been and can better see where we are going.

Senior Year Part I

Our Moral Life in Christ:  This study draws heavily upon the Bible, ancient Christian teaching and tradition, The Catechism of the Catholic Church, and the teachings of Pope John Paul II to lay out the answer to the question: “If God loved me so much as to send His Son to die for my sins, how should I respond?”  While the rules and laws of the moral life are clearly explained, they are taught in the light of the Christian who wants to respond to God out of love, which is the way that God wants us to respond.

Senior Year Part II

The Gospel of St. John:  Part of the goal of the Religion Department is to prepare the student for further theological and religious studies after high school.  Since St. John’s Gospel is so different from Sts. Matthew, Mark, and Luke both in language and theology, all post-secondary religious studies departments in Catholic colleges and universities and seminaries treat it as a distinct topic.  While the student will have been introduced to the Gospels in the Sophomore year, approximately the last quarter of the Senior year will be dedicated to the study of the Fourth Gospel.  The text for this study is The Gospel of St. John from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible as well as The Divine Presence of Jesus: Meditation and Commentary on the Gospel of St. John, by Fr. Alfred McBride.  The text is accompanied by a comprehensive set of study notes.

Leadership and Spirituality

This course content will focus on development of leadership skills with emphasis on the role of leader being servant.  Students will develop these skills by taking an active role in service projects, coordination efforts, volunteer recruitment, and by participation as leaders in actual projects. This course may be repeated once for an additional ½ credit.