Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Religion, Identity and Christian Youth Work

LEVEL 03 - Years 2, 3, 4 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Pastoral Theology, Liturgy and Canon Law

DESCRIPTION This study-unit has two main components: the first part deals with the relationship between religion and the formation of personal and social identity. The discourse will be contexualised in order to understand better the role of the catholic Community, especially in these last decades in Malta. The role of religion in general and the resurgence of spirituality in contemporary society will be tackled. The second part of the unit will deal with the contribution of the Catholic church through youth work. Students will be introduced to the philosophies, theologies and pedagogies present in different models of youth ministry. Students will also become acquainted with local practices and the vision of the local Church for the area of youth ministry.

Study-unit Aims:

(a) To assist course participation build in-depth familiarisation with the diverse theoretical paradigms that have been applied to the study of the relationship between religion, identity and youth work;
(b) To encourage course participants to examine the issues critically;
(c) To understand how religion impacts on identity in youth;
(d) To consider the diverse youth policy implications.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
(a) define religion and spirituality and their role in the formation of identity;
(b) outline the role of Catholicism in defining Maltese Identity.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
(a) critically debate the salient themes at stake;
(b) engage with the subject matter academically;
(c) explain the nature and aims of Catholic youth ministry
(d) examine the local scenario and discuss the proposals made by the local church in its attempt to meet the requirements of the Maltese younger generation

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:
(availability at the Library or otherwise is indicated against each entry)

- Abela, A. (2006) Shaping a National Identity in International Journal of Sociology 35/4. [available].
- Berger, P. (ed) (1999) The Desecularisation of the World. The Resurgent Religion and World Politics. Washington DC. [available].
- Gellel, A. & Sultana, M. (2008). Leaping from Non Secular to Post Secular. A Study of the Maltese Scenario. In H. G. Ziebertz & U. Riegel (Eds), Europe as a postsecular Society. Reflections on Religion and Societal Cohesion (pp. 111-126). Berlin: Lit Verlag. [available].
- McCarty R.J. (2005). The vision of Catholic Youth Ministry: fundamentals, theory and practice, US: St Mary's Press. [available].
- Taylor, C. (2007) A Secular Age Cambridge; Belknap [available].
- USCBC, (1998). Renewing the Vision: A Framework for Catholic Youth Ministry. Washington D.C.: USCBC. [unavailable].

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Independent Study

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment SEM2 Yes 100%


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It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.