University of Malta

Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Social Ministry in a Global Perspective

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Moral Theology

DESCRIPTION The study-unit consists of three parts. It opens with an analysis of globalization, its ethical and theological import. The second part deals with medicine and biology as transnational realities and the attempt of national, regional and international
organizations to establish ethical standards to guide progress in the life sciences. The concluding part focuses on Church ministry in an international setting and deals with concordats and Ostpolitik, the Holy See and the Middle East, the Holy See and the European Union.

Study-unit Aims:

1. To understand globalization as a world-wide complex process in which we are all involved for better or for worse and which we are morally bound to re-direct through appropriate governance.
2. To study Catholic social thinking on globalization and the response of the Catholic Church to the challenge of globalization and to specific global issues (mainly those relating to life).

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Analyze globalization as a complex phenomenon involving economic, political and cultural aspects and as the context in which social ministry will have to be exercised today.
- Evaluate some of the major imbalances that globalization is generating in an ethical perspective, with special reference to biotechnological issues.
- Demonstrate, in three short essays and a presentation, in what way they are re-conceptualizing social ministry in a parish and a diocesan setting.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to explore along with their colleagues new ways of responding to the global of social ministry issues.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Text/s

- Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations (
- Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, The Social Dimension of Globalization (2000), Globalization, Ethical and Institutional Concerns (2001) and Globalization and Inequalities (2002). Available on internet
- World Commission on the Social Dimension on Globalization, A Fair Globalization: Creating Opportunities for All, 2004. Available on internet

Supplementary Readings

- Bauman, Zygmunt, Globalization The Human Consequences ( Oxford, 1998)
- Beyer, Peter, Religion and Globalization (London, 1994) Available at the Library
- Falk, Richard, Religion and Humane Global Governance (New York, 2001)
- Report of UN Secretary General, In Larger Freedom: Towards Development, Security and Human Rights for all (2005). Available on internet
- UN Millennium Declaration. Available on internet
- World Summit 2005. Available on internet
- Bishops of COMECE Global Governance Our Responsibility to make globalisation an opportunity for all (2001). Available on internet
- German Bishops’ Research Group on the Universal Tasks of the Church, The Many Faces of Globalization—Perspectives for a humane world order (2000). Available on internet

ADDITIONAL NOTES Pre-requisite Qualifications: SThB/BA Theology

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Independent Study

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment Yes 100%

LECTURER/S Emmanuel Agius
Konrad Grech
George Grima

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
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21st Annual Augustinian Lecture 2017
The 21st Annual Augustinian Lecture 2017 will be celebrated on the 5th and 6th December 2017 with two lectures delivered by Rev. Prof. Theodore Dieter.

Closing Date Dissertation Proposals
Deadline to present dissertation proposals for next Faculty Board is Wednesday 29th November 2017 at 1700hrs

Augustinian Institute Academic Year 2017-18

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