General information

Course type AMUPIE
Module title The Core of Christianity
Language English
Module lecturer Marc-Thilo Glowacki
Lecturer's email
Lecturer position PhD Student
Faculty Faculty of Polish and Classical Philology
Semester 2024/2025 (summer)
Duration 30
USOS code 03SRDES.2CKP.14888.23


Module aim (aims)

To provide an insight into the first centuries of Christianity, its characteristics and problems, especially regarding doctrine

To demonstrate the theological complexity of Christianity, which can be traced back to its origins

To raise awareness of the variety of theological traditions and approaches in the different Christian denominations up to the present day

Point out the cultural factor in the formation of the theological tradition of the different Christian denominations

To develop the ability to discern the influence of past theological disputes on present-day Christianity

To develop the ability to discern the influence of past theological disputes on present-day Christianity

Pre-requisites in terms of knowledge, skills and social competences (where relevant)

Passing, in the previous semester or earlier stages of studies, a course in biblical studies, Old or New Testament theology, or a good knowledge of biblical literature


Introduction – periods and theological traditions of ancient Christianity

The Apocrypha – the problem of extra-biblical literature

Gnostics and other sects

The origins of the world – the clash of Jewish and philosophical ideas

Christ – God, man, or teacher?

The Holy Trinity – three or one?

Christian morality – main concerns

The holy sacraments – Christian initiation

The Eucharist in ancient Christianity

Penitence among Christians

The holy orders – organization of Churches

Christian asceticism – the birth of Christian monasticism

Mary, the Mother of God – her status among Christian churches

Christianity in the Roman Empire – the relation with the state

Reading list


  1. D’Onofrio G., A History of Theology Volume I: The Patristic Period, trans. M. O’Connel, Collegeville: Liturgical Press, 1996.
  2. Pelikan J., The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, vol. 1: The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition (100-600), Chicago: University of Chicago Press 1971.
  3. Quasten J., Patrology, vol. I-IV, trans. P. Solari, Allen, Texas: Christian Classics, 1981-1987.


  1. Gregory A., Tuckett Ch., The Oxford Handbook of Early Christian Apocrypha, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015
  2. O’Collins G., Christology: A Biblical, Historical and Systematic Study of Jesus, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009.
  3. Pelikan J., Mary Through the Centuries Her Place in the History of Culture, Mother of God, Grand Rapids: Yale University Press, 1996