Foundations of Theology

Course Code: RGT1101HF


Gordon Rixon, S.J.


Fall 2019

Saturday, 9:00 – 12:00




Regis College

Course Description

This course examines the historical development and contemporary practice of theology as an exercise of intellectual probity and religious commitment. Topics include the origins of Christian theology, its historical development, the relationship of religious narrative to religious doctrine, faith and reason, revelation and authority, tradition and development. The course introduces the theological methodology developed by Bernard Lonergan.

Course Objectives

This course employs the completion of preparatory reading prior to each class, regular mandatory bulletin board discussion, written assignments, on-line quizzes, final take home examination.


Preparation for First Class
Please read the following two selections (bulletin board questions are not required for the first class, see the Unit One Schedule of Readings and Assignments for guiding questions):


Berger, Benjamin. “Introduction” in Law’s Religion: Religious Difference and the Claims of Constitutionalism.
Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2015, pp. 3-21. Regis STL. Scan available on course website.


Casanova, José. “The Secular, Secularizations, Secularism” in Rethinking Secularism, eds. Craig Calhoun et al.
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011, pp. 31-53. Regis STL. Scan available on course website.

Course Schedule

A detailed course schedule is available for download.

Week 1

Reflecting on Post-Secular Religious Narratives

Week 2

Sixteenth Century Spiritual Narratives: Rhetorical Reading – The Autobiography of Ignatius of Loyola

Week 3

Sixteenth Century Spiritual Narratives: Structuralist Reading – The Life of Teresa of Avila

Week 4

Contemporary Indigenous and Christian Narratives

Week 5

Mediation in History (Lonergan and Ronald Niezen)

Week 6

Meaning (Lonergan and Charles Taylor)

Week 7

Religion / Conversion (Lonergan and Hans Urs von Balthasar)

Week 8

Foundations / Hermeneutics (Lonergan and Paul Ricoeur)

Week 9

Revelation and Tradition

Week 10

Doctrine and Development

Week 11

Faith and Reason

Week 12

Dialectic of Authority