Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2011-2012 (archived)

Module THEO40630: Liturgy and Sacramentality

Department: Theology and Religion

THEO40630: Liturgy and Sacramentality

Type Open Level 4 Credits 30 Availability Available in 2011/12 Module Cap


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To develop an understanding of the concept of sacramentality in historical and contemporary theology.
  • To examine the theological and liturgical basis for an understanding of sacred space, the sacramentality of the word and the seven traditional sacraments of the western Church.
  • To explore the relationship between doctrine and liturgical and pastoral practice.
  • To encourage awareness of key issues in ecumenical theology and the liturgical practice of different Churches.


  • The seminars will cover the following fixed themes:
  • The concept of sacrament and sacramentality.
  • The sacramentality of sacred space: exposition and critique.
  • The place of the sacraments in the Church: an historical perspective.
  • The remaining seminars will select from among the following:
  • The Eucharist and Real Presence.
  • Baptism and the understanding of salvation.
  • Confirmation: a rite searching for a theology?
  • Rites of Penance: mediating forgiveness.
  • Rites of healing and wholeness.
  • Ordination Rites.
  • The Sacramentality of Marriage.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Students will have gained an advanced understanding of the inter-relationship between Liturgy and Sacramentality.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Students will
  • 1) be able to apply the concept of sacrament across a range of liturgical settings and practices;
  • 2) be aware of liturgical convergence and divergence in the practice of different Churches and Christian traditions;
  • 3) be able critically to analyse selected liturgical texts;
  • 4) be able to identify the relationship between theology and pastoral practice; and
  • 5) understand the place of the sacraments within the discipline of Theology and Religion.
Key Skills:
  • Have enhanced skills in the acqusition of information through reading and research, and in the structured written presentation of information and arguments.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Seminars will encourage peer-group discussion, and enable students to develop critical skill in the close reading and analysis of with prescribed source material.
  • The source material may include (where possible) printed texts, resource papers, and visual resources.
  • The seminars will develop skills of effective communication and presentation and promote awareness of diversity of interpretation and methodology.
  • Learning outcomes will be summatively assessed by essay, exhibiting subject-specific knowledge and understanding.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 5 3MT, 2EpT 1 hour 5
Tutorials 3 1MT, 2EpT 1 hour 3
Seminars 17 1 per week MT and EpT 1 hour 17
Preparation & Reading 275
Total 300

Summative Assessment

Component: Essay Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Essay 5000 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

One essay of 5000 words.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University