The Theology Department encourages students to explore their own beliefs in relationship with the perspectives of Catholic Theology and Catholic Social Teaching, while respecting and embracing the religious diversity present in the Josephinum community. The five major world religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam and Christianity, are introduced and studied. The teachings of Catholic Christianity are explored at each level of study through navigating the Bible as well as Church teaching and tradition. Emphasis is placed on analyzing Catholic Social Teaching in course work and community service.  An additional focus is the development of one’s prayer life and relationship with God which occurs through both private and community experiences and reflection. 

World Religions                                                                                             
Grade 9

This course has three main focusses. [1] Students will learn the background of the Religious of the Sacred Heart in the context and history of Josephinum Academy. [2] Students will explore the following religions and religious traditions from cultural, historical, theological, and humanist perspectives: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Chinese religious traditions, Japanese religious traditions, Indigenous Peoples’ religious traditions. [3] Students will explore the meaning of religion, and seek to answer the question: ‘why does religion exists across time, place, and people?'

Old Testament & New Testament Studies                                                                           Grade 10

The first semester of this course provides an overview of the Hebrew Scriptures (known as the Tanakh); commonly known to Christians as the Old Testament of the Holy Bible. This study of the Old Testament will cover various themes, discuss many books in the Old Testament, and seek to understand the intellectual challenges present when interpreting it. In addition to interpretation, students will learn of the women and men of the Ancient Near East and their interaction with God that led to the creation of the stories and books that comprise the Tanakh. 

The Second semester of this course will follow a similar path as the first semester but will shift towards the books that comprise what is known as the New Testament. Students will learn of the life of Jesus, His role in the Trinity, and how His life influences modern theology and epistemology.

Catholic Social Teaching & Social Justice                                                                            Grade 11

Building on the foundations acquired in ‘World Religions’ and ‘The Bible,’ students will continue in their study of Theology. Students will grow in their understanding and application of the Goals and Criteria of the Sacred Heart Network and will study Catholic Social teaching as a rubric for living their individual and communal faith. In the first semester, students will study the origins and history of Catholic Social Teaching and will receive an overview of the seven major principles of Catholic Social Teaching. In the second semester, students will more closely examine each of the seven principles in light of current social justice issues. The second semester will also feature The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michele Alexander and Bad Feminist by Regina Gay.

Morality & Ethics                                                                                       
Grade 12

This course will introduce the basic principles behind moral judgment and how ethics and morality relate to our everyday lives. The first semester will cover the many famous theorists behind ethics like Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, and Confucious. Students will have the opportunity to investigate their own ethical decision making process through an interdisciplinary approach. With student-led discussions, case studies, and interactive activities, students will apply such principles to navigate complex moral dilemmas inside and outside the classroom. Topics will cover questions like “Is censorship ever good?”, “Would you speak up if you saw your friend bullying?”, “Is solitary confinement an ethical form of punishment?”, and lastly, “What does an ethical tourist look like?”.

Theology & Cinema                                                                                    
Grade 12


In this course, students will evaluate in writing and discussion the views of  different theologians and philosophers through the context of contemporary film.  

To complete this course, the students will gather as a group and create a short film with instructions and themes provided by Mr. Lewis.