The Academy’s religious studies curriculum emphasizes the development of a personal relationship with God and an active prayer life. Scripture is central to every course in the religious studies curriculum. You will be introduced to Hebrew and Christian scriptures in the first two years. All other courses apply those scriptures to the personal, communal, and global aspects of life. Classes pray together and learn about liturgical and personal prayer, including the rosary, the Stations of the Cross, and guided meditation. Jesus’ vision of the Reign of God in our midst is the model for the woman of faith in the world.
AHA’s religious studies educators engage students on three levels: information, formation, and transformation. Religious studies courses at AHA seek to engage both the head and the heart, striving for the holistic growth of each student while taking into account adolescent developmental needs. The basics are integrated into all the courses so students can understand and articulate Catholic beliefs and practices.
- Religion is not confined to the religious studies classroom. The practices and values that are studied, examined, and practiced in class permeate the entire school.
- The Religious Studies Department works closely with Campus Ministry to ensure there are many opportunities for the entire school community to participate in the life of faith.
- Religious studies teachers moderate activities such as Outreach, Kindness Klub, and Youth Group.
Requirements: All students are required to take four years of religious studies courses for graduation.
Religious Studies Courses
God’s Revelation in Scripture
Analyze sacred scripture in its many literary forms to better understand the faith message. Study the major divisions of the Old Testament Scriptures and how they are related to our faith life today. You will also learn themes of the prophetic writings and the role played by the literary prophets in the history of the Judeo-Christian people. (0101) GRADE 9 3 QUARTERS
Prayer: SSND Charism and Spirituality
Explore the meaning of prayer as a relationship with God and take opportunities for prayer experiences. Hear the founding story of the School Sisters of Notre Dame, their charism, and the goals of an SSND education. Consider the nature of God, the praying person, and the communication skills necessary for any relationship. Course topics include personal and liturgical prayer with specific reference to the Catholic liturgical cycle. (0101) GRADE 9 QUARTER
Morality: Life in Christ
Analyze the nature of Christian morality, and examine the process of conscience formation and the role of authority and responsibility in the exercise of freedom. This course includes the processes of value choosing and decision-making, a theology of sin and reconciliation, and invites you to be a model for response-morality. (0201) GRADE 10 SEMESTER
Who is Jesus Christ?
Explore the humanity and divinity of Jesus Christ by examining the theological and historical background of the gospels. As a student in this course, you will study how the message of each gospel leads to a clearer understanding of the challenge of Christian living. (0201) GRADE 10 Semester
Discover how religion is a way of life for all peoples. Take a closer look at the development of religious awareness with a primary focus on the principal living religions of the world, including their beginnings, scriptures, beliefs, and worship. (0301) GRADE 11 SEMESTER
Catholic Social Teaching: Living as a Disciple of Jesus Christ in Society
Gain a greater awareness of the network of injustice and oppression that are obstacles to the Christian task of building a global community. Consider individual and corporate responsibility to establish justice based on the themes of Catholic Social Teaching. (0301) GRADE 11 QUARTER
Sacraments: Encounters with Jesus
View the sacraments as a celebration of Christ’s values and presence among us. Explore the symbolic action of human life and the profound social dimension of sacramental experience. This course includes a study of the historical, liturgical, and theological dimensions to help students discover the relationship between the sacraments and your own life. (0301) GRADE 11 QUARTER
The semester course, Christian Lifestyles (0401), is required for all AHA seniors. Two other quarter courses are selected as electives by preference.
Participate in a comprehensive overview of Christian lifestyles and the meaning of vocation. Consider good information, sound psychology, and a meaningful religious dimension to understand your unique gifts and purpose in terms of your vocation to live the gospel. (0401) GRADE 12 SEMESTER
Death and Dying
Acknowledge and confront the reality of death in a truly human way by considering how we should deal with the dying, the beliefs about death and resurrection in scripture, and the idea of creative grief. Emphasis is on Christ as the one who is the Resurrection and the Life. (0401) GRADE 12 QUARTER
Search for Meaning
Explore contemporary media and writers as well as ancient thinkers in an attempt to understand the human search for the meaning of life. Consider a spirituality that seeks to fulfill Jesus’ promise, “I came that they might have life, and have it to the full.” (0401) GRADE 12 QUARTER
Build on the foundation of Catholic Social Teaching. Take an integrated approach of prayer, study, and action to explore the many aspects of peacemaking, including modern day peacemakers and nonviolent social movements. In light of the gospel call to be peacemakers, you will learn and practice personal peacemaking skills. (0401) GRADE 12 QUARTER
Women of Faith
Take a fresh look at the Hebrew and Christian Testaments to focus specifically on the stories and roles of women and the images of God already contained in the Bible. Reflect on the unique contribution of women in the areas of theology, prayer, social justice, and morality as you discover what it means to be a woman of faith in our own time. (0401) GRADE 12 QUARTER
Ethical Issues in Today’s World
Consider the meaning, foundations, and requirements of ethics, building on the material covered in the morality and Catholic Social Teaching courses. Afterward, you will explore units in business ethics, medical ethics, and ethics in a technological age using practical current case studies. Focus on decision making and discernment will serve you as you encounter personal and professional dilemmas. (0411) GRADE 12 SEMESTER.