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Centre of the Universe & Centre of History

St John Paul II – Redemptor Hominis 1

A free of charge 5-sessions course

Tuesday Evenings 7:00 – 9:00pm

15th June – 13th July 2021

On the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, Bishop Philip Egan launched a Year of the Eucharist for the Diocese of Portsmouth – and as a resource for everyone who desires to deepen their faith and understanding of the Most Holy Eucharist.

This Year of the Eucharist carries forward the fruit from the extended national “Year of the Word – the God Who Speaks”, and invites us to contemplate the enduring Presence of Christ our Saviour in the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar.

Bishop Philip has asked the Academy of the Annunciation to present this new interactive short series: Encountering Christ to mark the start of this special Year of the Eucharist.

St John Paul II, in the opening of his first Encyclical, Redemptor Hominis, reminds us that Jesus Christ is the centre of the universe and the centre of history.  In this series, we consider how we can encounter Christ today and how we can share the Good News of Jesus Christ with our family, our friends, and the world around us.

1 – Christ the Unique Mediator & Cornerstone of Our Faith 15th June

In this session, we consider the Person of Jesus Christ – unique Mediator and cornerstone of our Faith.  How is Jesus different from Buddha, Krishna, and other religious leaders/gurus?  Why is He unique?  In the midst of contemporary culture and the media storms of bad news, we consider the call to focus on the Good News of Jesus Christ, “centre of the universe and of history”.

St Johnn Paul II, Redemptor Hominis 1)

2 – Encountering Christ in the Holy Eucharist
22nd June

The Second Vatican Council declares that the Eucharist is the “source and summit of the Christian Life”.  

(LG11. CCC 1324)

In this session, we consider how we truly encounter the Person of Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, and how this changes EVERYTHING!

The Jesus, who walked on the streets of Nazareth and Galilee and Judea is the same Jesus who comes to us truly, really, and substantially in the Holy Eucharist.  In this session, we contemplate the love of the Saviour as He makes Himself present for us in the most Blessed Sacrament.

3 – Christ and Catholic Moral Teaching
29th June

Is the Catholic Church’s Moral Teaching Outdated? – It does seem that Catholics are overly attached to archaic ways of thinking. Are there deeper reasons for the Catholic Church’s moral teaching?  And if yes, what are those reasons?  Is there a “KEY” to understanding the rationale behind the Church’s moral teaching?  And if yes, what is it?

Come and consider the moral teaching of the Catholic Church – today, perhaps the most misunderstood aspect of the Catholic Faith.  Our family members and friends who are non-Catholic or only culturally Catholic wonder why the Catholic Church seems to continue to impose so many obligations on people.

In this session, we consider some common objections of our time, and we will learn how to move beyond the realm of obligation and see the link between Catholic moral teaching and the Good News of Jesus Christ.

4 – Encountering Christ in Prayer and Discipleship
6th July

In this session, we consider authentic prayer and Christian discipleship.

What is prayer – really?  I go to Church and I see other people pray … but they seem so devout – and I don’t feel that way … it is hard to sit there for a whole Holy Hour – should I be worried?

I really want to start praying.  I want to give my life to Christ – but I am not sure how to do that.  How to begin and how to grow in the life of prayer.

If you or anyone you know has ever had these kinds of questions, this session is for you.

5 – Contemplating Christ in the Annunciation Through the Lens of Sacred Scripture  13th July

“The contemplation of Christ has an incomparable model in Mary … The eyes of her heart already turned to Him at the Annunciation, when she conceived Him by the power of the Holy Spirit,”.

[St John Paul II, Rosarium Virginis Mariae 10]

In this session, we take a closer look at the Annunciation of the Angel Gabriel to the Blessed Virgin Mary through the lens of Sacred Scripture.  As we contemplate this moment when God assumed a human nature in the Person of Jesus Christ, we consider the unique role of the Blessed Virgin Mary in her Son’s plan for the salvation of the world.

The Structure of Each Session

The evening begins at 7:00pm, and comprises two 45-minute sessions with a 15-minute break between sessions..

Why Study with the Academy of the Annunciation?

With so many free online courses to choose from, why should you pay to study with the Academy of the Annunciation?

As a student of the Academy of the Annunciation you can be sure that everything you are taught will be the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church – based on Scripture, Tradition, the Magisterium, and the Fathers and Doctors of the Church:

  • each week you will receive two to two and a half hours hours of teaching, questions and answers and real discussion;
  • during each session, you can ask questions and get real answers to your specific questions.

In addition, as a student on either the Newman Catechetical Certificate – Reasons for Faith course or the St John Diploma in Spiritual Formation course you receive:

  •  detailed Notes followng each session;
  • 24-hour email access to the Senior Academic Tutor – which includes phone conversations and zoom appointments.

Free of charge 

To encourage as many people as possible to experience the Academy of the Annunciation we have decided not to charge a fixed fee for this short taster course.  However, we ask you, please, to consider making a generous donation to help support the Academy of the Annunciation and enable it to develop its important work.  AoA is a not-for-profit registered charity, which has no reserves, being entirely dependent on course fees and donations to cover its costs.  Whatever donation you are able to make is important to us.

How it Works

Once you have registered, you will receive an email on the Monday evening before the sessions containing a link for the following day’s two sessions.

Each Tuesday evening there is an optional check-in at 6:50pm – for anyone who wishes to practice clicking the link and making sure they can see and hear without any problems.  Then, we begin promptly at 7:00pm with the first session.  To “enter the meeting room”, you simply click the link in your email, follow the directions, and you are in!  There is no need for any app or advanced computer or technical skill.

Real-time Interactive Participation

Once you are in the “meeting room”, you can see and hear everything. To ask questions, or participate in the discussion, you simply un-mute your microphone (by depressing your space-bar), or you can opt just to listen.  We prefer everyone’s web-cam to be turned on, so that we’re all visitble to each other, but you can opt to turn off your web-cam.  You can ask questions, contribute to the discussion and participate just as you would if you were onsite – all from the comfort of your home!

Join Us Now!

The Academy of the Annunciation invites you to join us as we consider together the many ways Jesus is calling us to encounter Him!  It is the perfect occasion to connect with other Catholics – perhaps over a glass of wine in the evening! (Provide your own wine or beverage of choice at home.)

Come and join us!  We look forward to seeing you and hearing from you in our virtual meeting room as, in response to Bishop Philip’s call, we launch the Year of the Eucharist.

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