Theology Update for the Week of September 22

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Dear friends in Christ

Here is the latest news on classes here:

What is it to be a man and, in particular, a simple or perfect or finished man? That is the question posed by the book of Job. We are studying this book with a class that meets twice a week: you may come to either session. On Thursdays the class is at 12:40pm on the 2nd floor (and it is fine to bring a sack lunch; sometimes people do come on their lunch break). On Sundays the class is at 10am on the 5th floor. I plan to continue the study of Job until the suffering becomes too much to bear.

Poison Monday: Strong Poison, by Dorothy L. Sayers, will be discussed at the Good Books & Good Talk seminar on September 23, from 6:15 to 7:45pm in Andrew Hall. If you read the novel, you are welcome to the discussion. I think mystery novels are intrinsically works of theology, and I wish I had time to read more of them. But one can hardly improve on Miss Sayers.

Augustine ends on Tuesday: Our final class (on September 24) will focus on chapters 14, 16-17, 21, and 24-26 of Book XIX of the City of God, wherein Augustine addresses the peace of the earthly city, matters of justice, judgment, equity, republic, and so forth. We had nearly 50 people this past Tuesday; if you weren’t among them, you are welcome to join us for the conclusion. This final session will be led by Professor Jeremy Waldron, and it will meet in Andrew Hall at 6:30 p.m. for one hour. (Book XIX may be read here.)

How Do You Know? (and what can you say?): Persons who would like to read some Aquinas might reserve Wednesday evenings at 6:30, starting October 9 and continuing October 23 and weekly thereafter. My plan is to read through Questions 12 and 13 of the First Part of the Summa theologiae, which is on how God is known and what names we can literally use when we speak about God. If you want to splurge, you can buy an overpriced (Cambridge University Press) paperback in our bookstore which has translation and notes by Herbert McCabe. He’s good, but you’ll have to decide if he’s that good. You may also just read one of the older translations available on the web.

The next “Good Books & Good Talk” seminar will take place on Monday, October 28. I will announce the book this coming Monday evening.