Reflection on the Rest of the Catholic Catechism

You have a choice of topics A or B:

A: In case you have forgotten, this is a course in contemporary Christian thought. We have been reading the sections of the Catholic Catechism that relate to the Ten Commandments, sacramental life in the Church, and prayer. I have exposed you to these against the backdrops of twentieth century ecclesiology (Newbigin), philosophical theology (Frei), historical theology (Olson), and world demographics (Jenkins). Do these backdrops and the catechism help you understand each other?

Describe the most important specific ways in which you believe paragraphs 1066ff of the Catechism draw especially on the currents of Christian thought described in our other course readings, how they presuppose them, how they counter them — in general, how the two interact. I am looking for three or so claims backed by one or more examples each.

B: In case you have forgotten, this catechism aims at training Christian leaders to be better leaders. As someone acquainted with (and perhaps a member of) a contemporary Christian community, you know Christian leaders.

Write a letter to a Christian leader, commending and/or criticizing three or so specific teachings of the Catechism (paragraphs 1066ff) to him or her. You will want to choose teachings you think have special relevance to that leader and his or her specific community. Your letter will be stronger insofar as it manifests familiarity with that community's location within the broad tradition of contemporary Christian thought — and that means familiarity with specific passages of the other course readings (Newbigin, Frei, Olson, and/or Jenkins) that describe that specific location.

In other words, offer three or so specific "pointers" to a specific leader that draw directly on this part of the Catechism and draw indirectly on the other course readings for understanding the contemporary Christian context of that leader's community or ministry.

Please keep your paper three pages, double-spaced; however, if you prefer to write a single-spaced one-page "prose outline", you may do that instead. Follow the directions in my handout for writing papers.

Remember, I want to see proper style, clear writing, a thorough answer to the question, and explicit citations of course materials.

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