Course Code: RGT3223HF



Fall 2016
Wednesday 9:00 – 11:00 



Course Description

This course is a textually attentive, historically conscious, and theologically disciplined exploration of the mystery of the Trinity through an explication of the Church’s doctrine regarding the Trinity. It begins, therefore, in the definitive revelation of the triune identity of God through and in the person of Jesus Christ. It then traces the development of the Church’s reflection and proclamation of this mystery through her controversies and councils, seeks to understand key systematic developments in the Patristic and Medieval periods, and contemplates and engages contemporary approaches and applications. This itinerary of reflection is intended to promote a personal and interior appropriation of the doctrine of the Trinity.

Course Objectives

BD Level

Students successfully completing this course will be able to demonstrate the following learning outcomes:


  • (A) IN RESPECT OF GENERAL ACADEMIC SKILLS, students will develop an aptitude for (1) interpreting, (2) analyzing, and (3) appraising primary texts within the Christian theological tradition through a close (and sometimes guided) reading of texts and written assignments wherein students describe, compare, and evaluate the texts they have read.


  • (B) IN RESPECT OF THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE CONTENT OF ONE OR MORE THEOLOGICAL DISCIPLINES, students will learn to distinguish (1) revelation, (2) dogma, (3) and theological reflection through a guided appraisal of the historical development of the doctrine of the Trinity and consequently to distinguish historical theology, dogmatic theology, and systematic theology without divorcing them from each other.


  • (C) IN RESPECT OF PERSONAL AND SPIRITUAL FORMATION, students will apply the doctrine of the Trinity and the Church’s theological reflection on that mystery by testing and applying the psychological analogy through a guided examination of their own intellectual operations and expressing their findings in written form.


  • (D) IN RESPECT OF MINISTERIAL AND PUBLIC LEADERSHIP, students will develop strategies for presenting the doctrine of the Trinity in various ministerial contexts. They will illustrate these strategies in written form.

Course Schedule

A detailed course schedule is available for download.

Week 1

Course Introduction / Revelation, Dogma, Faith, and Theology

Week 2

The Revelation of Jesus Christ regarding the Divine, Triune Identity

Week 3

Scriptural Foundations

Week 4

Trinitarian Controversies and Conciliar Responses

Week 5

Patristic Developments

Week 6

Augustine and the Psychological Analogy

Week 7

Medieval Developments

Week 8

Thomas Aquinas and the via doctrinae

Week 9

Trinitarian Processions, Relations, Persons / Psychological Analogy Revisited

Week 10

Trinitarian Missions

Week 11

Twentieth Century Developments

Week 12

Contemporary Challenges and Prospects