DR8602Y  Box Hill; DR8622Y Mildura; Ballarat DR8642                 (Min. No. 8)

Course: GCTRE                                                    Unit Value: 10 points

Schedule of dates


This unit seeks to present with ecumenical sensitivity a general introduction to the origin, nature and development of the Church of Jesus Christ as the community of his followers. This entails an examination of the question ‘who is Jesus?’ On this foundation the unit presents the Church itself as the sign and instrument of Jesus Christ today, for the coming of the reign of God on earth.  It is in this context that sacraments are understood as signs of the loving presence and self-giving of God in Christ. In developing this point the unit sketches the origin, nature and development of the Church’s ritual sacraments in reflecting and sustaining the Church in its mission. The unit’s consistent focus is on the whole Church as the Spirit-filled People of God and Body of Christ, and on the presence of the Holy Spirit in the life, sacraments, mission and ministries of the Church.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this unit, it is expected that students will be able to:

  1. outline the origin of the Church from the person of Jesus Christ and his early disciples
  2. describe how the mission of the Church in the world today continues the mission of Jesus Christ
  3. identify particular human experiences as possible signs and paths to the mystery of God
  4. outline how the early Christians understood themselves as communities of Christ and their sacraments as celebrating their shared commitment to Christ and his mission.
  5. explain how the Church’s ritual sacraments originate in both the Christ-event and in the Church’s response
  6. describe the role of the Holy Spirit as the life and soul of the Church, its mission, its ministries, and its sacraments


Two 2000 word essays (50% each)


Bausch, William. A New Look at the Sacraments. Mystic, CT: Twenty-Third Publications, 1983

Chauvet, Louis-Marie. The Sacraments. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2001.

Cooke, Bernard. Sacraments and Sacramentality. Mystic, CT: Twenty-Third Publications, 1983.

De Gidio, Sandra. Sacraments Alive: Their History, Celebration and Significance. Mystic, CT: Twenty-Third Publications, 1991.

Fullenbach, John. Church: Community for the Kingdom. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2002.

Gaillardetz, Richard R. Ecclesiology for a Global Church: A People Called and Sent. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2006.

Guize, Tad. The Book of Sacramental Basics. New York/Ramsey, NJ: Paulist Press, 1981.

Lohfink, Gerhard. Jesus of Nazareth: What He Wanted, Who He Was. Collegeville, MN: Michael Glazier/Liturgical Press, 2012.

________. No Irrelevant Jesus: On Jesus and the Church Today. Collegeville, MN: Michael Glazier/Liturgical Press, 2014.

Martos, J. Doors to the Sacred: A Historical Introduction to Sacraments in the Catholic Church. Tarrytown, NY: Triumph Books, 2001.

Morrill, Bruce. Divine Worship and Human Healing. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2010.

Noll, Ray. Sacraments: A New Understanding for a New Generation. Mystic, CT: Twenty-Third Publications, 1999.