April 1, 2023

Docendo discimus, in teaching we learn - Seneca

Courses Taught


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                and hard to grasp is God

                But where danger lies, grows

                also that which saves

                – Hölderlin





Master level

  • Constructive Theology
  • Escatologia
  • Eschatology and Church
  • Ética
  • Faith and Fiction
  • Fostering Narratives of Hope
  • Fundamentos da Teologia Prática
  • God Issues in Fiction
  • Introdução a Filosofia
  • Justification and Justice
  • Lutheran Confessional Heritage
  • Pensamento Filosófico Contemporâneo
  • Systematic Theology
  • Teologia da cruz
  • Teologia Sistemática
  • Theology of the Cross
  • Third World Theologies
  • Unity and Diversity

Graduate Level

Graduate Theological Seminars (GTS)

Sources and Resources:

  • Around Foundationalism
  • Church, Community and Society
  • History and Geography in Christian Theology
  • Leitura Hegel
  • Marxism and Theology
  • Pneumatology
  • Reading Hegels’ Phenomenology
  • Teologia 20 século
  • The Doctrine of the Church
  • The Prisoner, the Exile and the Fugitive
  • Trinity and its Discontents

Concepts and Issues/Issues and Options:

  • (Post)Modernity and Theology
  • Panorama da Teologia na América Latina Seminário de Metodologia
  • Post-colonialism: The Theory of a Praxis
  • Schleiermacher
  • Seminário de Pesquisa
  • The Modernity of our Discontent
  • The Young Hegelians
  • Theology and Culture in the Americas
  • Theology and Social Theory
  • Wither the Church

During Spring 2016, Westhelle is teaching two courses:

1. RHTH-405, Jesus, the Kingdom and the Church

This is a traditional course and required for all MDiv students. For the course profile and other details, please visit http://www.lstc.edu/

2. RHTH-604, Graduate Theological Seminar (Tuesdays, 6:30-9:30pm)

This is a graduate theological seminar for ThM and PhD students and falls under “Concepts and Issues.” For the course profile, check out http://www.lstc.edu/

Course Description

  • Constructive Theology – Course offered to advance M.Div. and M.A. students providing them the opportunity to examine different ways in which theology is done, considering the role the biblical text, the tradition, the context and particular agendas play in the development of the theological discourse. It involves reading theologians from different perspectives, contexts and schools to enable them to make a critical review of several different and exemplary attempts of making the theological endeavor explicit and through writing exercises bring to self-consciousness the theology each one is doing.
  • Theology of the Cross – A critical and constructive exploration of the historical and contemporary significance of the theology of the cross in conversation with its proponents and critics with emphasis on the relationship between atonement and human suffering. Particular emphasis is given to see the theology of the cross not as a doctrine but that which you live by, a usus passionis. The students are encouraged to see the significance of crossing and are challenged to find categories to name and cross differences without suppressing them but rather lifting them up.
  • Third World Theologies – A study of methodologies adopted by representatives of Third World Theologies especially contemporary Latin American theology giving special attention to the historical formation of Latin American Liberation Theology, its socio-cultural background, its assessment of Scripture and tradition,  the relationship between theory and practice and the dialogue with North American theologies.
  • Faith and Fiction – An advance level course that brings about a blending of theology and literature, enabling students to look for images of religion/God in mundane everyday life and also deal with the problem of evil and theodicy. Students read literary works both fictional and otherwise.
  • Eschatology and Church – A course that deals with the continued activity of God in the church and the world, the nature of the church, the work of the Holy Spirit through Word and Sacrament, Christian faith and life, and the significance of eschatology for Christian theology and practice.
  • Justification and Justice – An examination of some fundamental issues in Luther’s socio-political thinking as they were framed historically and by some contemporary theologians in the discussion of the so called “two kingdoms doctrine.” Focus on the Pauline background regarding justification of the ungodly and the demands for justice in society is an essential part of the
    course as is the Luther’s understanding of theology as theologia crucis.
  • GTS: Sources and Resources - Provide advanced level students tools that aid research and also build up resources for continuing their study in their area of interest. Students are challenged to develop their own methodology and hermeneutics with the help of the “sources and resources” toolkit they build up in the course of the seminar. Classes include but are not confined to
    • the interface between Marxism and Theology, aimed at exposing students to the knowledge of Marxism, its different interpretations and profound influence in the world and the impact on the understanding of religion in general and the Christian faith in particular
    • questions related to the doctrine of Trinity giving particular importance to the examination of the constitutive features of the so called “renaissance” of Trinitarian theology
    • study of the emerging significance of the Holy Spirit in the context of therenewal of the Trinitarian theology and its implications in theology and philosophy using the work of St. Basil to contemporary voices in both areas
    • the debate between theology and social thought tracing it back to the apologists and to the present day queries of the validity/desirability of such relationship and the challenges arising out of it.
  • GTS: Concepts and Issues – The course is an ensemble of different voices and topics that raise significant issues relevant today and provide students of theology the opportunity to articulate with critical competence and autonomy their own theology. The courses offered in this category range from
    • impact of modernity to theology, issues raised by modernity to contemporary theology
    • thought of G.W.F. Hegel reading the 1807 Phenomenology of the Spirit giving weight to its impact on and challenges to contemporary theology.
    • analysis of selected voices of theologians and their influence on the crisis of western thought and how they present different paradigmatic solutions leading to theological possibilities
    • a close reading of the classic, The Christian Faith, and its influence on the shaping of the Christian faith in contemporary times
    • the Young Hegelians – a selection of readings from Strauss through Bauer, Steirner, Feurbach etc., and how their writings have formed and dared both philosophical and theological thought to develop and take new directions