School of Christian Formation ... Online

Approved by the Office of Catechetical Leadership, Youth and Young Adult Ministry Formation  •  Anthony C. Marchica, Director

School of Christian Formation ... Online Courses

Course Objectives, Online Tutorials, Course Texts, and Course Requirements

If you are seeking credit: To receive credit for an online course, you must be officially enrolled in the Searchlight Virtual School. Additionally, all requirements must be met within the time frame of 3 months for single courses and 4 months for combined courses.  (To download a printer friendly version of the information on this page, click here.)

 

Important: If you have previously enrolled in the Searchlight Virtual School and already have a Student Number, it is not necessary to re-enroll. You may order the SCF online courses using your present Student Number.

Courses, Course Descriptions, Requirements, Tutorial(s), Texts, and Ordering

To learn more about a particular course, click on the course title. A content panel for that particular course will open directly below when you click on the title of a course. This panel section offers the following information:

Course Description: This provides a brief description of the course and the course objectives.

Course Requirements: Please read the course requirements carefully. Requirements vary depending on the course. Courses require approximately 15 hours of contact time with the materials. Combined courses and subjects which are more comprehensive contain more content, therefore completion time can vary from course to course. Single courses have a 3 month time frame; combined courses have a four month time frame. Two of the courses require a written reflection paper.

Online Tutorial(s) Required: Each course has two components: The online tutorial(s) and the text assessment. This section identifies the required online tutorial(s) and provides a link to each one. The page containing the online tutorial will open in a separate browser window. Therefore, to close the tutorial, simply close that browser window.

Required Course Text: Online students are responsible for obtaining the course text. The Searchlight Virtual School does not sell or supply the course texts. We have provided links to purchase the texts online. The cost may vary depending on the source and whether you purchase it new or used. Note: You aren't required to purchase the text from the designated sources. You may purchase the text from any online source or from a local bookstore.

Order the Course: Important: You must be enrolled in the Searchlight Virtual School before you place an order for an online course. If you have not officially enrolled in the school, please click here. If you have previously enrolled in the Searchlight Virtual School, you do not have to re-enroll. You may use your current student number. The "Order Course" button takes you to the "Order Courses" page. Purchasing a course online registers you for the course. Course materials are sent as attachments to an e-mail when payment notification is received. If you do not receive your materials within 48 hours of placing an order, please contact us right away. Courses can also be ordered by going directly to the "Order Courses" page. Note: Courses are ordered and paid through PayPal's interface.

The online tutorials for each course play on mobile devices, such as iPads and tablets. However, electronic PDF forms are not supported on mobile devices. If you also want to complete your interactive course PDFs on a mobile device, obtain the free Adobe Fill&Sign App.

Bible: Old and New Testaments (Introduction to the Bible)

Note: This is a combined course. Online students in the Diocese of Palm Beach will receive credit for both the SCF Old Testament Introduction and New Testament Introduction courses.

Course Description: This course is designed to introduce learners to the Bible and help them understand, love, live by, and teach Scripture. It will help students understand:

• The meaning of inspiration, historical development, and literary criticism

• The primary themes and basic concepts in Scripture, including covenant, kingdom, creation, salvation, and conversion

• The scriptural foundations for Catholic moral teaching, conscience formation, and decision-making

• The use of Scripture in theological reflection

• God's revelation in Creation, the person of Jesus, and lived experience

• Jesus' life, mission, death, and Resurrection

Course Requirements:

• Complete the four online tutorials and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a combined course, all requirements must be met within a four month time frame.

Required Text

Scripture: Nourished by the Word

Margaret Nutting Ralph, Ph.D.

Loyola Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $7.95

Amazon.com

Loyola Press

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Christology

 

Course Description: This course is designed to help students develop the skills required to proclaim Christ in today's world. It will:

• Bring individuals to a clear knowledge of Jesus Christ as true God and true man

• Clarify the Church's teachings about the nature and life of Jesus Christ

• Help bring individuals into a personal relationship with the living Christ

• Help seekers understand why Jesus is the example and guide for their lives

• Help them worship the living God through Christ and in the Spirit

Course Requirements:

• Complete the two online tutorials and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

Who Is Jesus?

By Leonard Foley, O.F.M.

 

The Four Faces of Jesus

By Virginia Smith

 

 

Required Text

Christology: True God, True Man

Matthias Neuman, O.S.B., S.T.D.

Loyola Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $7.95

Amazon.com

Loyola Press

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Ecclesiology

Course Description: This course presents a theological study of the Church with a particular focus on the Church as "communion" and "mission." It follows the vision of the Second Vatican Council in explaining the nature and identity of the Church. It will help students:

• Answer the call to communion and mission in specific ways of life and activity

• Understand what is meant by a "communion of disciples"

• Clarify the ordering and structure of the Church

• Examine the Church's ministries of Word and Sacrament

• Understand the Church's evangelizing activity in the world: to transform human society in the light of the Gospel

• See that being one, holy, catholic, and apostolic is both what the Church is, as well as what the Church is called to become

• Understand the role of Mary in the life of the Church

Course Requirements:

• Complete the two online tutorials and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

What Is 'The Kingdom of God'?

A Theologian Explains the Key Image of the Gospel

By Richard P. McBrien

 

Mary of Nazareth: Jesus' Mother, Our Mother

By Alfred McBride, O. Praem.

 

 

Required Text

Ecclesiology: The Church as Communion and Mission

Morris Pelzel, Ph.D.

Loyola Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $7.95

Amazon.com

Loyola Press

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History of the Church

Course Description: The history of the Church is the story of faith handed on, of how fallible human people have struggled to live out the Gospel in the very concrete circumstances of their lives for two thousand years. This course will help students:

• Understand that the entire Church is responsible for the conservation and transmission of the Gospel message

• Examine the role that prayer, study of Scripture, and the teachings of the Church have played in the Christian story

• Learn from the insights and wisdom, as well as the mistakes and missteps, of those who have striven to live the Gospel message throughout the history of Christianity

• Understand why some knowledge of the depths and riches of the past help nourish the ministry of the Church today

Course Requirements:

• Complete the online tutorial and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text.  The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorial

 

Ten 'Peak Moments' of Church History: From Pentecost to Vatican II

By Alfred McBride, O. Praem.

 

 

Required Text

Church History: Faith Handed On

Kevin L. Hughes, Ph.D.

Loyola Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $7.95

Amazon.com

Loyola Press

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Liturgy and Sacraments

Note: This is a combined course. Online students in the Diocese of Palm Beach will receive credit for both the SCF Liturgy and Sacraments courses.

Course Description: This course is an introduction to the history, theology, and pastoral practice of the Church's liturgy and her sacraments.  It will help students:

• Realize how the liturgy is understood as the work of the Church and the work of God

• Examine the sacraments as visible signs

• Understand how and why the sacraments confer the gift of grace

• Clarify the meaning of "the institution of the sacraments by Christ"

• Examine a brief history of the early development of each of the seven sacraments

• Grasp the importance of Baptism as the sacramental action of the Church that makes us Christian and Catholic

• Understand the history and theology of the Eucharist

• Examine the theological and pastoral implications of the Church's sacramental life

Course Requirements:

• Complete the three online tutorials and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a combined course, all requirements must be met within a four month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

Liturgy: The Church's 'Work' of Praising God

By Carol Luebering

 

 

The Sacraments: Symbols of God's Care

By Sandra DeGidio, O.S.M.

 

The Sacramentals Embracing God Through Creation

by Joanne Turpin

 

 

Required Text

Sacramental Theology

Means of Grace, Ways of Life

Kurt Stasiak, O.S.B.

Loyola Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $7.95

Amazon.com

Loyola Press

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Vatican II

Note: Those who have earned Basic and Intermediate Catechist Certification through the Searchlight Virtual School automatically receive credit for this course.

Course Description: This course develops the principle that the Second Vatican Council remains the fundamental event in the life of the contemporary Church and is the constant reference point for pastoral action. This course will:

• Familiarize students with the antecedent historical context of the Council

• Familiarize students with the Popes behind the Council

• Assist students in understanding that Vatican II addressed an extraordinary number of issues, and familiarize them with ten basic principles of reform

• Explore vital Church teachings and practices, first through a historical examination of the vision set forth by the major documents of the Second Vatican Council and then in light of the Church’s contemporary life and practice

Course Requirements:

• Complete the Online Tutorials for Vatican II and the Text Assessment for the required text: Vatican II Today.

• Submit the completed Course Worksheets to the Searchlight Virtual School. To submit, attach the completed document to an e-mail. Send to Michelle@SearchlightVS.com.

• Read The Decree on Ecumenism. You may read the Decree on Ecumenism online at the Vatican Website. You can also download a PDF version of the document. Reading this document in its original form is a required part of your course. This document is also the topic of your required reflection paper.

• Submit a written reflection on the Decree on Ecumenism.  Narrow the focus of your reflection to something within the document that stood out to you, grabbed your attention for a particular reason, or perhaps even surprised you. Explain why.

• This reflection paper has no specified length but should demonstrate that you have given sufficient thought and attention to the issues at the heart of this document.

• The last page of the PDF document sent to you for this course contains a text input field for you to use for your reflection paper. If your reflection requires more room than allowed, the text box will automatically scroll.

• This is a single course, so all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Required Text

Vatican II Today

Calling Catholics to Holiness and Service

Edited by Judy Ball and Joan McKamey

St. Anthony Messenger Press

Purchase Text Online

for $10.88 from

Amazon.com

 

 

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Morality

Course Description: This course emphasizes that the Christian moral life begins with the experience that we are loved by God in an unimaginable, unfathomable way and that living faithfully is our attempt to respond to the gift of that love. This course will help students:

• Understand the meaning of Christian morality

• Explain why morally good choices lead to true human fulfillment

• Examine and explain what the true human goods are and why they lead to human fulfillment in this life and in the next

• Clarify what is meant by "loving others"

• Realize and embrace the Christian's moral responsibility to take an active role in the work of establishing the reign of God

• Understand the reality and meaning of "conscience"

• Comprehend the nature of "sin" and its power in individual lives and in the world

• Understand how resurrection faith and Christian hope impact the human process of conversion

• Examine issues of medical ethics from a Catholic perspective

• Examine several important themes and ideas concerning human sexuality

• Examine key convictions of Catholic social teaching

Course Requirements:

• Complete the online tutorials and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

Discerning the Voice of the Good Shepherd

Part 1: Principles of Morality -- Toward True Human Fulfillment

Part 2: Modes of Responsibility and Modes of Christian Response

By Michelle Willis

Based on: The Way of the Lord Jesus (Volume 1)

Christian Moral Principles

By Germain Grisez

 

The Ten Commandments: Sounds of Love From Sinai

By Alfred McBride, O.Praem.

 

Who Will Be Saved?

What Catholics Believe About Salvation

By Thomas Richstatter, O.F.M.

 

 

Required Text

Christian Morality:

In the Breath of God

Russell B. Conners, Jr., Ph.D.

Loyola Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $7.95

Amazon.com

Loyola Press

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Social Doctrine

* Those who have earned Basic and Intermediate Catechist Certification through the Searchlight Virtual School automatically receive credit for this course.

Course Description: This course stresses that “to work for social justice is embedded in the Gospel message of Jesus Christ, who came ‘to bring good tidings to the poor ... liberty to captives ... and recovery of sight to the blind’” (NDC #42-C).  This course will:

• Assist students in understanding and carrying out the seven key themes at the heart of Catholic social teaching articulated by the  United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

• Familiarize students with important Social Justice terms and how they apply to the work of catechizing for social justice

• Present an exploration of the contributions of five Popes who played an important role in formulating, articulating, and expanding the Church’s social teachings

• Provide an examination of eight social documents (six Social Encyclicals and two USCCB Pastoral Letters) and stress the key points of each

• Clarify the distinction between “social justice” and “private charity,” leading students to understand how and why the Church’s social teaching “seeks to apply the Gospel command of love to and within social systems, structures,

and institutions” (NDC #43-C)

• Establish a Biblical foundation for the Church’s social teachings, one which clarifies the framework through which

both the Old and New Testaments have established a “living tradition of social justice in thought and action” (NDC #43-C)

• Provide an overview of Vatican II’s Gaudium et Spes - The Constitution of the Church in the Modern World

Course Requirements:

• Complete all six steps of the Online Tutorial for the Social Doctrine Course.

• Submit the completed Course Worksheets to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read: A Concise Guide to Catholic Social Teaching by Kevin E. McKenna, Ave Maria Press.

• Submit a written reflection on the effect of the Church's Social Teachings on your spiritual outlook. Your reflection should clearly take into account the material learned through the online tutorials and what you read in the course text.

• This reflection paper has no specified length requirement but should demonstrate that you have given sufficient thought to these issues and how they affect your own spirituality.  Has this material changed you in any way? If so, how?  If not, why?  Support your answer.

• This assignment may be sent as an e-mail attachment using .doc, .docx, .txt, or .pdf extensions; it may also be composed and submitted as an e-mail message.

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

Building A Culture of Life

The Church's Social Teachings

 

A Six-Step Tutorial

Theological Advisor: Rev. John D'Mello, Ph.D., S.T.L.

Required Text

A Concise Guide to Catholic Social Teaching

Kevin E. McKenna

Ave Maria Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price $13.95

Amazon.com

 

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Spirituality

Course Description: This course is a clear and effective presentation of Catholic teaching on the spiritual life. This course:

• Translates the wisdom of the classic spiritual direction of Teresa of Avila and John of the Cross into understandable contemporary principles without compromising their depth and richness

• Presents six keys for a deeper  spiritual life: prayer, Scripture and spiritual reading, the sacraments, community, virtue, and forgiveness

• Offers light on the path toward spiritual growth

• Invites believers to follow the steps the saints have taken and to discover how to deepen the quality of one's spiritual life

• Presents a concise and accessible thematic overview of the various ways Christians have approached God in prayer and practice

Course Requirements:

• Complete the nine-step online tutorial and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

An nine-part tutorial based on the book:

Six Keys to a Deeper Spiritual Life

By Therese Cirner

 

Used with the permission of the author: Therese Cirner.

Visit her web site:

http://www.theresecirner.com

Required Text

Christian Spirituality

Themes from the Tradition

By Lawrence S. Cunningham

and Keith J. Egan

Paulist Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $16.95

Amazon.com

 

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Pastoral Ministry

Course Description: This course provides an overview of lay ecclesial ministry situated within the social and ecclesial environment and within the framework of the Church's belief, teaching, and pastoral practice. This course:

• Presents a foundation for lay ecclesial ministry grounded in Scripture and the teachings of the Church

• Outlines the specific characteristics of lay ecclesial ministry as laid out by the USCCB

• Explains the sacramental basis for lay ecclesial ministry

• Explains why "all ministry finds its place within the communion of the Church and serves the mission of Christ in the Spirit"

• Examines why the Church is a "communion for mission" and explains the role of lay ecclesial ministers in that mission

• Demonstrates the possibility of a fruitful collaboration between ordained and lay ecclesial ministry in the service of the Church

• Examines the call of lay ecclesial ministers and challenges the whole Church to move forward in hope

Course Requirements:

• Complete the online tutorials and submit the completed corresponding course materials to the Searchlight Virtual School.

• Purchase and read the required course text.

• Complete and submit the "Assessment" materials associated with the course text. The format for the Assessment is "open book."

• Since this is a single course, all requirements must be met within a three month time frame.

Online Tutorials

 

Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord

A Resource for Guiding the Development of Lay Ecclesial Ministry

 

A Statement of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

 

Part One Foundations:

A. Describing and Responding to New Realities

- and -

B. Understanding the Realities in Light of Theology

and Church Teaching

 

Co-Workers Tutorial 1

Describing and Responding to New Realities

 

Co-Workers Tutorial 2

Understanding the Realities in Light of Theology and Church Teaching

 

Excerpts from Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord Copyright © 2005, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, D.C.  All rights reserved.  No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright holder.

 

If you would like to obtain the entire Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord document, use one of the link below.

 

Amazon.com

 

Required Text

Forward in Hope

Saying AMEN to Lay Ecclesial Ministry

By

Bishop Matthew H. Clark

Ave Maria Press

Purchase Text Online:

List Price: $11.95

Amazon.com

Ave Maria Press

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An Introduction to the RCIA (For Diocese of Venice Students ONLY)

An Introduction to the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults

Based on "The RCIA: The Art of Making New Catholics" by Sandra DeGidio

Hours for completion: Approximately 1 • Completion Timeframe: One month from order date

This course sets the stage and provides an essential foundation for understanding the process of bringing new believers into the Catholic Church. The General Directory for Catechesis (GDC) sees the adult baptismal catechumenate -- the process by which the Church brings new believers into its communal life -- as the inspiration and model for all catechesis -- all passing on of the faith.

 

However, if the Church's efforts for catechesis are to be modeled on the adult baptismal catechumenate, all Catechists need at least a foundational understanding of the RCIA process.

 

This course will help you understand the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. It also provides a historical perspective by outlining the initiation practices of the early Church, so you understand that the RCIA is part of our rich Catholic tradition, not necessarily something new.

 

 

 

Content provided by St. Anthony Messenger Press.

www.americancatholic.org

©Copyright.  All rights reserved.

 

Access the online tutorial for this course.

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Phone: 772-563-9457   •   E-mail: Michelle@SearchlightVS.com