Mary in the Catholic Tradition

Course Description

The understanding of Mary in the Catholic Tradition is a vast and fascinating topic which encompasses Marian devotion, liturgical feasts, apparitions, art, dogmas, magisterial teaching, and theological reflection, among other subjects. In this introductory course the goal is to acquaint participants with five major topics.

Course Content

Unit 1

  1. Mary in the Gospels

Unit 2

  1. The four officially defined Marian dogmas in Roman Catholicism

Unit 3

  1. The presentation on Mary in the Second Vatican Council and in subsequent papal teaching

Unit 4

  1. Mary and women

Unit 5

  1. Our Lady of Guadalupe, the most widespread Marian devotion in the Americas and increasingly in many U.S. parishes as well

Course Format

  • Created by Notre Dame Theology Professor.
  • Six weeks in duration, with one week for orientation.
  • Typically 15-20 students in each course.
  • Lectures delivered by video via web-streaming.
  • All lecture text available online in text format.
  • Supplemental readings are provided to encourage further exploration of topic, internet links provided for all readings.
  • Weekly written assignments (150-200 words) required.
  • Weekly facilitator moderated chat sessions with students in course.
  • Facilitated by STEP Staff.

Required Texts

  • All course materials available online in the course.

Participation Requirements

  • Weekly viewing or reading of lecture texts.
  • Participation in class discussion using discussion area (minimum 2 comments, questions or responses weekly.)
  • Weekly written assignment (150-200 words.)
  • Weekly chat session with other students in course (3 required throughout course.)
  • Course evaluation.

Time Expectations

4 to 6 hours a week (time varies from student to student depending on your learning style and schedule.)

Course Certificate

A Certificate of Completion awarding 25 Contact Hours will be sent upon completion of all course requirements.

Meet the Developer

Dr. Timothy Matovina

Dr. Timothy Matovina

Dr. Timothy Matovina is Associate Professor of Theology and the William and Anna Jean Cushwa Director of the Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism at the University of Notre Dame. He works in the area of Theology and Culture and has offered presentations and workshops on a variety of topics for dioceses, pastoral institutes, and ministry formation programs throughout the United States. His publications include Guadalupe and Her Faithful (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005).

B.A., Indiana University, 1978; M.Div., Toronto School of Theology, 1983; Ph.D., Catholic University of America, 1993